|Home > Chelle Bliss > Men of Inked > Uncover Me (Page 36)|
|Uncover Me(Men of Inked #6) by Chelle Bliss|
“Maybe you two should go into business,” Mike said, still staking his claim by holding on to Mia like someone might snatch her.
I nodded, not really having put much thought into what I’d do after leaving the DEA. Then I looked at James, who shot me a look that said maybe it wasn’t a bad idea before turning his attention back to Izzy.
“We’ll see. One thing at a time, Mike.”
“So what the hell happened over there, son? Did you get the bad guys?” Pop asked, reaching out to hold my mother’s hand.
Even after all these years, the two were like teenagers. They held hands, kissed, and hugged at every turn. They were whom we’d all gotten our love gene from, and it was something we couldn’t shake—even Anthony.
“It’s a long story, Pop. Bad shit happened while I was there. More than I’d like to ever discuss or care to remember. So far, they’re all behind bars, and I hope they stay that way.” I sighed, wishing Angel were with me. I wondered what she was doing and if she was okay. I’d left her alone in a strange house.
“Me too. You think you guys have a solid case?” He cocked an eyebrow.
“Yeah. James and I worked our asses off to make sure it would stick. I didn’t want it all to be in vain.” I rubbed my temples, trying to block the memories of shit I’d done that I’d never thought I’d do. Murder, disposing of bodies, drugs, and other shit I forced the fuck out as soon as it started creeping back in.
“Good,” he said, nodding and giving my mother’s hand a quick squeeze.
“Who’s hungry?” Ma asked, standing from her chair before releasing Pop’s hand. “I didn’t make anything special. No one bothered to tell me my son would be home today.” She turned to James and gave him the look of death. I could almost see the tiny daggers shooting out of her eye sockets.
“Uh oh,” Anthony teased. “Looks like someone isn’t the new favorite anymore.” He tossed his head back, laughing and holding his stomach.
“We all know Thomas is the real favorite,” Mike replied, rolling his eyes and making a face at me.
It dawned on me that while I’d been living in hell, they’d sat here every Sunday enjoying life and teasing each other relentlessly. I had done the work so families like mine could have these moments of peace and happiness, but knowing all I’d missed still made my heart hurt.
“Let’s go, people. Sit down, and the girls and I will grab the food,” Ma said, clapping her hands for us to move it.
Everyone jumped, scrambling to their feet as Ma made her way to the kitchen. Pop put his arm around me, walking next to me with a giant smile.
“It’s so good to have you home. Your mother has been a wreck. I’ve been worried sick about you, and even your brothers and Izzy have been. It’s good to finally see with my own eyes that you’re okay.”
“I’m alive, if that’s what you mean, Pop,” I replied, turning to look at him with a small smile.
“I know you’ve seen some shit. I can’t even begin to imagine, but you’re back and that’s all that matters.”
Everyone took their spots, and an extra chair was pulled to the table for me. I had lost my table presence, but I hadn’t expected it to be left open with the two newest additions to the family.
“I’m so hungry I could eat a darn horse,” Suzy said, placing her napkin across her lap before she picked up a fork.
“You’re eating for two, sugar. Have as much as you want,” Joe leaned over and kissed her on the cheek.
Her face turned red as she mouthed, “I love you,” to him and they nuzzled. What the fuck had happened? I chuckled, trying to evoke the memory of my brother from times past. He was a badass and people were scared of him, but Suzy wasn’t. They were the yin to the other’s yang.
“For fuck’s sake. She’d eat everything if you let her. The woman is like a machine,” Anthony whined, taking a sip of the water that had been placed on the table before we’d sat down.
Izzy, Mia, and Ma walked in the room each holding giant dishes of food that let off steam. Izzy and Mia each set their bowls perfectly spaced down the table.
“I made lasagna, chicken parm, and sausage and peppers,” Ma said as she placed the lasagna in front of my father.
My mouth watered from the smell. All the memories of my childhood and every Sunday dinner came flooding back. There wasn’t a cook in the world who could rival her. No one. I rubbed my hands together and couldn’t wait to dive in and taste all the deliciousness.
“Lasagna!” Suzy squealed, dropping her fork before she clapped her hands. “I’m eating every last drop of that, baby. It’s my faaaavorite!” She practically bounced in her chair and rubbed her belly with excitement.
Ma smiled, touching Suzy’s shoulder and staring down at her belly. “Sweetie, you eat as much as you want. You’re feeding my grandbaby. There’s plenty of food for everyone else. Would you like the first piece?”
“Yes!” Suzy yelled, her eyes and smile growing wide.
“I hate that baby,” Anthony grumbled under his breath, and shook his head.
“What did you say?” Joe asked, glaring at Anthony.
“Nothing. I’m starving and it smells so damn good.”
“You’re always starving. Ladies and kids first! Don’t be a greedy asshole,” Joe barked, reaching behind Suzy and slapping Anthony in the head.