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For crying out loud, it hadn’t even been a passionate kiss but one more for comfort. Jinx probably kissed his female friends the same way. Well, maybe not. She couldn’t imagine Curly or Spec tolerating Jinx’s lips on their women. A giggle burst forward as she imagined Spec’s epic meltdown if one of his brothers tried to lay one on Liv.

“You know, I almost bet against you, but at the last minute, I decided to put my twenty down on you actually showing up.” Speak of the devil. Liv’s amused voice had Harper spinning around.

Spec ambled alongside his woman with his arm slung around her shoulder. Liv’s hair wasn’t as perfect as usual, with a few strands out of place. Her shimmery top was a bit rumpled as well. not to mention the small bruise on her neck. Seemed they’d had a bit of fun before leaving the house.

“You guys bet on me?” she asked as she jammed her hands on her hips. Should she be offended that they’d gambled on her chickening out?

Laughing, Liv shook her head. “No, we’re not that bad. But we did have a plan to drag you out of your apartment if you didn’t show. We were gonna send Rachel. She’s the youngest and sweetest of us. Figured she’d have the best chance of convincing you. If that didn’t work, it was Jo.” Liv shuddered with dramatic flair. “That crazy bitch would tackle you, cuff you, and toss you in her trunk.”

Harper laughed along with her and Spec. Maybe tonight wouldn’t be so bad. It might even be fun if she stuck close to the people she knew.

“You look good tonight, Harper,” Spec said with a kind smile. It surprised her every time the slightly scary biker spoke to her without his tone matching his perpetual scowl. Well, the scowl disappeared for Liv, but almost everyone else got its full power.

She glanced down at the outfit she’d spent hours agonizing over—a black leather mini skirt from a thrift store paired with strappy black heels and a sparkly black tank top. The tank fit her like a second skin, showing off her toned upper body and even a hint of cleavage. Compared to what she’d worn in prison, she felt naked but had a sneaking suspicion she’d be more covered than most of the women attending the party.

“Thank you,” she said to Spec. “I’ve got nothing on Liv, though.”

“Oh, please,” Liv said with a roll of her eyes as though she didn’t look smoking hot in a white crop top and tiny sequined black shorts. She stepped away from her man and linked her arm with Harpers. “Come on, babe,” she called out to Spec. “Harp and I need some drinks.”

Behind them, Spec chuckled, but he didn’t pull Liv back to him. “Yes, my queen.”

“Ooh, I like that. Keep that up and you might get lucky later.”

Harper nearly choked on her spit.

“What?” Liv shot her a frown.

“Your lipstick is smudged.”

Liv didn’t even have the decency to blush. She merely grinned and swiped a thumb under her lips. “Oops, guess the cat is out of the bag.” She winked. “He already got lucky tonight. We both did.” Then she laughed and towed Harper toward the clubhouse.

As they walked, with Spec trailing behind them, Harper couldn’t help but wonder what it’d be like to live in Olivia’s shoes. To have a man she wanted and who wanted her so much they couldn’t keep their hands off each other. But beyond that, they loved each other. Deeply. Liv didn’t seem to have a single insecurity regarding her Spec. She knew the depth of his devotion and love for her and trusted him implicitly.

Would Harper ever get there? Would she ever be able to give herself to someone in that way without wondering when the other shoe would drop?

Without worrying if and when they’d betray her?

Without thinking they’d do something to land her back in prison?

Probably not. Not without the ability to trust. Liv trusted Spec with everything she had. That much was obvious. Harper could never take the initial leap of faith where she put her trust in someone. Taking the step toward being with someone terrified her and seemed impossible at this point in her life. No two ways about it. She’d have to make herself vulnerable. Anyone did if they wanted a relationship or even a situation to work. And that was what she wasn’t sure she could handle. She worried that seven years in prison without healthy friendships, the love of family, and support had destroyed her ability to try.

What a depressing thought.

“Here we go,” Liv said, shaking her from her pity party.

Spec pulled the door open, and Liv ushered everyone inside.

“Whoa,” Harper said as she drew up short.

Beside her, Spec chuckled. “Yeah, it’s a lot. But stick with us, and you’ll be fine.”