Savage Rhythm

By: Chloe Cox

Somehow, though, she didn’t think that would be much of a problem. She was much more worried about keeping enough blood in her brain to be able to form words.

That man…

She swore she could still feel his touch on her hip. Like he’d branded her. Every time she thought about it, about Declan standing tall over her, about Declan touching her, about Declan ordering her to be quiet, she got more turned on, until she felt practically incandescent. And now she was supposed to spend eight weeks on a cramped tour bus right next to him while keeping it together enough to write a book.

Molly shuddered.

She needed to focus.

Then her phone buzzed in her pocket with a new text message, and the likelihood that she’d be able to focus on anything other than Declan Donovan got vanishingly small.

DECL.A.N: “Volare in Venice. 10 pm.”

What the shit?

Molly’s leg bounced up and down uncontrollably while she stared at her phone. He was summoning her to Club Volare?

To do what?

Ok, well, no way was she waiting until ten. She needed to talk to Adra, stat.

~ * ~ * ~

Molly pulled her beat-up old LeBaron up to the Volare compound gates and gave the security guy a sheepish look. She fully expected to have to plead her case and make embarrassing phone calls in order to get in or to be told flat out that they didn’t want her car anywhere where actual people could see it, but the big guy just said something into a headset and opened the gate for her.

Weirdly, this made Molly more nervous. Inside was the hottest place in L.A. Even the public area of Club Volare was difficult to get into, and the private area? No one knew what went on. The whole place was exclusive, but not necessarily in the normal way. Rumor was that the guy who ran it, Chance Dalton, had no patience for people he deemed “dicks.” There were plenty on the A-list who couldn’t get in, and it burned them all.

At least that’s what the gossip rags said.

And here she was, driving her LeBaron wreck into the very limited private parking area, where Adra—oh, bless her—was already waiting for her.

And grinning ear to ear.

“What did you hear?” Molly asked warily, giving the car door the final hip bump it needed to close properly.

“Nothing. It’s what I know,” Adra said.

Molly smiled. Adra was infuriating, but amazing. They’d clicked immediately, had spent the entire four-hour job interview becoming fast friends, and had been in constant contact since. It had been such a relief to feel like there was someone who wanted to take her under their wing that it made Molly realize how much she missed that sense of being looked out for. She’d had to remind herself not to read too much into it, but she was grateful as all hell for Adra.

“And what do you know, oh sage?” she asked as Adra linked their arms.

“I know that you’re here because Declan asked you to be here. So I know that you must have impressed the hell out of him, because tonight is invite only, and he has control of the guest list.”

Molly could only imagine.

“You let him have control of a guest list?” she said in mock horror.

“Don’t change the subject.”

“Well, ok, I won’t. But can you please tell me what is going on? Why am I here?”

Adra grabbed her by the arm and pulled her under a covered path, the canopy woven with tiny little lights, that led to a large, modern looking building. “Well, the bigger question of why, I can’t answer. But tonight is the first surprise performance of the reconstituted Savage Heart.”

Molly froze. “Are you serious?”


Molly immediately looked down, wishing she’d spent more time on her appearance. She’d stubbornly decided that she wouldn’t do anything, really, besides pull on her favorite cut offs and tank top and run some sea spray through her hair. Anything more would be suggestive, and she was definitely not trying to suggest anything to Declan.

“You look great, Mol,” Adra said. “Actually, you look so good it’s kind of annoying. Do me a favor and don’t tell me how long you spent getting that tousled surfer girl look down, ok? Declan’s going to freak when he sees you.”

That did it.

“Oh God, Adra, I don’t know what to do,” Molly said, collapsing into a pile on the bench. “I am so, so, so determined not to fuck this up, and I think I may already have fucked it up.”