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Extract from Rebel (Hellions MC #1) by Ava Manello

Prologue

Jackson 

I pull my bike off the highway, ready to turn into the clubhouse gates. I’m pissed to notice a cardboard box dumped in front of them and blocking my path. Lowering the Harley onto its kickstand I dismount, I’ll have to move the bloody thing before I can open the gate. 

The box lid is loosely folded over on itself and I almost drop it when I hear a mewling sound coming from inside, for fucks sake, I hope no ones been stupid enough to dump a puppy on us. Do we really look like the local animal shelter? 

I’m shocked to shit when I discover that it’s not a puppy in the box, it’s a baby. Inquisitive blue eyes stare up at me and a tiny fist reaches up as if to touch me. I make a harrumph kind of noise in my throat and am rewarded with a gurgle in response. I’d say it was accompanied by a smile, but I’m pretty sure I remember my sister telling me that my nephew was too young to smile when he was that small, it’s just wind. I don’t know about that, must’ve just been coincidence that he had wind every time I picked him up. 

I turn my attention back to the infant in front of me. Why the hell would anyone dump a baby, especially outside a clubhouse full of bikers? A convent I could understand, a Children’s home even, but a clubhouse? I don’t think any of us have any idea how to deal with this. 

Gently, taking care not to jostle the little one, I cradle it in my arms. I’m rewarded with coos and giggles and an appalling aroma of soiled diaper. Man, I need to find someone to hand this situation over to. I can’t even tell if it’s a boy or a girl from the anonymous white baby grow they’re dressed in. 

I press the intercom, calling for help to come to the gates. Bill doesn’t believe me at first when I tell him why I need help, reluctantly agreeing to come and assist. Looking down in the box I spot an envelope. I’ll have to wait for Bill to get here before I can read it, I don’t think I can juggle the baby and the letter. The tiny infant seems remarkably content snuggled in between my leather cut and my arm.  I touch my finger against its nose,  gently and am rewarded with a small fist grasping tight hold of my finger. 

Bill makes his way to the gate far too slowly for my liking, he’s strolling along like he’s on an afternoon stroll for fucks sake. I swear at him to hurry up, then realise I need to watch my language in front of the child. Bikers and babies are not a good mix. 

I’m rewarded by a suitable look of shock on his face when he realises I was telling the truth. 

“What the fuck?” he exclaims. 

“Watch your mouth.” I warn, gesturing with my head to the infant in my arms. 

Bill reaches for the baby, but surprisingly, I’m reluctant to let go. Instead, I tell him about the envelope. He takes it from the box, opens it and starts reading it out loud. 

Hellion M.C 

The property in this box belongs to you. She’s the unwanted outcome of a night of partying with you guys last year. I think it’s only fair you take responsibility as none of you saw fit to use protection. I’m afraid I don’t know which of you is the father, could be any one of you. She’s the result of my one night of rebellion, and I won’t pay the price of that for the rest of my life. She’s your problem now. 

The note isn’t signed. I can’t believe anyone would dump a baby so casually. I’m enraged at the heartlessness the mother has shown and the cowardly way out she’s chosen. I look at the little girl in my arms, the smile is back on her face, and wind or not, that’s the moment I realise this tiny soul has stolen my heart already. 

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