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“He’s three minutes out,” Tek announces, snapping his laptop closed.

“Okay, everyone, quiet down and find a spot to hide!”

People begin scrambling, trying to conceal themselves. Poor Razor has to leave the room because he’s just too huge. Giggling, I turn off the lights. Luckily, the twins are asleep and won’t be able to spoil the surprise. For now at least.

Gage’s car lights beam through the windows, momentarily illuminating the room. When they go off, my excitement goes through the roof. It’s not easy to surprise Gage Hunter but I think Ellen and I have pulled it off. We’ve been planning this party for months and kept it between us so no one would let it slip. His brothers are shit at keeping secrets from him.

The front door opens, his keys jangling when he tosses them on the table in the foyer. I listen to his boots on the tiles as he makes his way to the kitchen, the refrigerator door opening and slamming.

My heart beats faster.

I can’t wait to see his face.

As he’s walking by, I flip the light on. He approaches the room carefully.


The moment he steps into the living room, people jump out from their hiding places, shouting, “Surprise!”

Gage’s hand instinctively goes to his back, no doubt reaching for his gun. He recovers quickly, looking around the room in shock.

“Happy birthday, husband.” I approach him, sliding my hands around his neck.

“What have you done, wife? You nearly gave me a fucking heart attack.”

“Nearly. So since you’re not dead, let’s celebrate.”

He smiles, taking my hand in his and making his way around the room. Of course, we stop by Dr. E first.

“Happy birthday, brother.”

“Thanks, E.”

They hug, Ellen and I watching the display of affection. I don’t think they could be any closer if they were related by blood. Then again, blood is not what makes you family. I learned that in the last couple of years.

“You’re another year older. How do you feel?” Dr. E asks.

“Like I’m another year older. Shit.”

Ellen steps up to him, arms outstretched. He leans in, accepting her hug and kiss on the cheek.

“Happy birthday, big brother.”

“Thanks, shorty.”

Venom and Chopper walk up. Venom hands Gage a beer.

“Happy birthday, son.” Chopper pulls Gage into a hug. “You’re almost as old as me now.”

Gage chuckles, patting Chopper’s back.

“Happy birthday, Prez.”

“Thanks, Venom.”

“You’re in for a real treat. Em worked her ass off on that cake. The samples were amazing.”

“I look forward to it.”

After making a few more stops and talking to his aunt and some of his brothers, he drags me away to the kitchen.

“How did you pull this off?” He leans on the counter, tugging me into his arms.

“It wasn’t easy, trust me.”

“I told you I didn’t want a party.”

My eyes wander his face, and like every other night, I see the weariness in his features.

“I know, but you need it.”

“How so?”

“You’ve been working so hard since the twins were born. You spend every spare moment with us and you need to relax a bit, Gage. You haven’t even been spending much time with your brothers other than church. I know for sure at least Dr. E misses you. Unwind. Enjoy this.”

He holds my gaze, arms tightening around my waist.

“I don’t deserve you.”

“No, you don’t. You deserve the best and that’s what I’m trying to be for you.”

“You are the best, baby doll. I don’t know what I’d do without you.”

“I love you even more for thinking I am. And you’ll never know what you’d do ’cause I ain’t going nowhere.” I lean into him. “Kiss me.”

A hand slides into my hair, gripping and gently pulling my head back. I get lost in his sapphire eyes. He presses his lips to mine, his kiss a sweet, slow caress. It doesn’t take long for it to become more, his tongue sliding between my lips. Moaning, I press my body to his. His hand moves down from the small of my back, grabbing and squeezing an ass cheek. I wrap my arms around his waist, sensations only he can evoke, rippling through me.

“Cut it out, you two.”

Startled, I break away, turning my head toward the voice. Ellen.

“You’ll have time for that later. Your guests are waiting.” She smirks, a little too happy for interrupting.

“We’ll be right there,” Gage says, not releasing me. When she walks out, he kisses my forehead. “Come on, doll. Let’s party.”





Raven was right.

I did need this. I’ve had tunnel vision, making sure my family is provided for. My businesses are doing well, but my income took a major hit when we abandoned the protection runs. I know we’re all missing the money and that’s why I’ve been putting extra attention into the club businesses, too. I won’t let my brothers’ pockets suffer because I wanted to settle down.

“Uncle Gage.” Mikey taps my leg twice.

I crouch down so we’re face-to-face. “What’s up, little guy?”

“When are we going to have the birthday cake?”

“Well, I don’t see why we can’t have it right now.” I glance up at Raven and she nods in agreement. “If you give Auntie Raven a kiss, I’m pretty sure she’ll give you a really big piece.”

His eyes widen and then he runs to her, hugging her legs. She leans down, tapping her cheek. Mikey gives her a loud smack. She giggles, ruffling his hair.

“Wait here, jit. Auntie Emily and I are gonna get it.”

He hops in place in impatience. Smiling, I survey the room. I’m not the only one who needed a night like this. Everyone’s enjoying themselves. Even the twins. They woke up about an hour ago and have been basking in all the attention. It’s been a while since they were around everyone at the same time. God, I can’t believe they’ll be a year old in only a few days. Where has the time gone?

“Okay, everybody!” Ellen shouts over the noise. “Here comes the cake!”

She launches into the birthday song and the others join in. Raven and Emily walk in, carefully carrying a huge cake. Sparkling candles provide a mini fireworks show. People cheer. Someone whistles. Mikey claps in excitement. When the ladies place the cake on the table, I move closer to take a look. Venom was right. Emily outdid herself. There are three layers, each neatly and intricately decorated in red and black, a Grim Reaper on a Harley sitting on the top layer. “Happy Birthday Gage” is written on the side of the bottom layer.

“That’s… outstanding,” I tell her.  

Emily blushes, whispering her thanks before stepping away. Raven stands next to me, raising her hand to shush everyone.

“Quiet down, quiet down. I have something to say to my wonderful husband.”

“Oh, brother,” Venom whines, “here comes the lovey-dovey shit.”

I flip him off, knowing he’s joking. He laughs, tugging Emily into his side.

Raven rolls her eyes, then takes my hands, staring up at me. Annoyance quickly gives way to something else. Something I see in her gaze every, single day.


“It’s your birthday,” she begins, “and I wanted to give you something special. Not just the party and gifts, but to surround you with something you’ve given me. A family.”

I take a step closer to her.

“When I moved here, I had no one. I judged you without knowing anything about you, but quickly learned you’re one of the best men I’ve ever met. The others are right here in this room.”

Someone whistles, and cheers sound around the room. I keep my attention on my wife.

“You’ve given me everything I could ever need and only hope I can do the same for you. This is only the third birthday I’ve shared with you but know I will be here for every birthday, every holiday, every day to come. Happy birthday, Gage.”

While everyone cheers, I cup her face and pull her lips to mine. I don’t have words to express how her speech makes me feel. How she makes me feel. “Love” doesn’t even come close.


Hailey’s voice drags me back to the moment. I detach myself from Raven, taking my daughter when Nita brings her over.

“Cake time!” Mikey yells.

I chuckle, grabbing a knife and sticking it into the bottom layer. Raven calls for Chaos, and with our children in our arms, we cut the cake together. Camera flashes go off in every direction. Ellen and Emily take over, cutting slices of cake and serving them. I devour mine, managing to feed Hailey small pieces. Emily sure has a gift. No wonder business at Sweet Treats is skyrocketing.

Nita comes back over, taking Hailey once again.

“Go enjoy yourself, baby boy. Chopper and I got the kiddies.”

I kiss her cheek. “Thanks.”

Raven takes my hand, pulling me to the middle of the room.

“Let’s dance, Reaper.”

She knows I’m not much of a dancer, but I’m more than willing to stand here and let her grind on me. A few people join us. Razor hands me another beer. Taking a sip, I clear my mind. For the first time in a long time, I relax and enjoy myself. It feels fucking good.

Guess I need to listen to my wife more often.





Gage is officially partied out. I think he’s had a bit too much to drink and now he’s lying across our bed, unable to move. I tug his boots off and attempt to position him correctly. He groans, lids fluttering open.

I smile down at him. “How does thirty-five feel?”

“Just like thirty-four.”

“Yeah, right.” I chuckle, straddling him and removing my top. There’s no way he’s up for sex but that doesn’t mean I can’t torture him a bit.


“Too tired?”

“Spirit is willing, baby doll, but the flesh is weak.”

I throw my head back, laughing.

“It’s okay.” I kiss his forehead, then snuggle up next to him. “Get some sleep.”

“’Night, babe,” he mumbles, yawning. “Love you.”

“Love you, too.”





When I wake up, I’m alone. I drag myself out of bed, brushing my teeth and showering before going in search of Raven. I find her in the living room, cleaning up the remnants of my birthday party.

“Good morning, babe.”

She glances up at me, blessing me with a bright smile. “Buenos días, mi corazón. Your breakfast is in the microwave.”

I walk over to her, removing the garbage bag from her hands and dropping it. Smiling, she steps into my waiting arms.

“Just your heart?”

“Of course not. Eres mi vida… mi alma.”


“My soul.”

Sighing, I tighten my arms around her. “You know I feel the same way, baby doll.”

“I do.” She stands on her toes, kissing my cheek. “Did you like your party?”

“What, you couldn’t tell?” I chuckle.

“Yeah. You were pretty tuckered out. Didn’t even open your gifts.”

“What did you get me?”

“Get you?” She raises a brow. “I threw you a whole party. That was your gift from me.”

“Doesn’t matter. I have everything I need.” I move my hands to her ass, squeezing the cheeks.

“Oh… looks like the flesh isn’t weak anymore.”

“Nope. Fully operational again.” I lean in, trailing kisses up her neck.

She gasps, tipping her head back. “I suppose you wouldn’t let me finish cleaning up first?”

“How about I fuck you first, then I’ll help you clean up?” I whisper against her skin.

Her breathing accelerates.

“Sounds like a plan.”

I pick her up, hooking her legs around my hips, and taking her to the couch. She’s discarded her top by the time I sit with her astride me. Fuck, she’s not wearing a bra. Before I can bury my face in her perfect breasts, her hands are on my cheeks, lifting my face to hers.

“Our first time was on your birthday. Remember that?”

“Best fucking birthday present ever.”

She giggles, circling her hips on my hardening dick.

“Want another lap dance?”

“Later, doll. What I want right now is to be inside you.”

I pinch both her nipples, watching her shiver, eyes closing as her head falls back.


There it is—my trigger.

I shift, placing her on the couch under me and then quickly removing her jeans and panties. As impatient as I am, she pushes the waistband of my sweatpants down, gripping my dick and stroking it. I return the favor, circling her clit until my fingers are coated with her juices. She releases me, gripping the arm of the couch with both hands, hips rising.

“Oh, God….”

“You ready, babe?”

“Yes. Fuck me, Gage.”

Throwing her leg over my shoulder, I slide home. That fucking look on her face gets me every time. I can’t believe that after all this time, after being inside her a million times, it’s still there. Just like the first time. Her muscles contract around me and I close my eyes a shiver darts up my spine. Fuck.

Best. Fucking. Birthday. Present. Ever.

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