The judge slams the gavel down hard on the woodblock in front of him which jumps up from the impact. Two years. That’s what I was sentenced to for the drugs I got caught in possession of from the past along with the brutal bar fights and stolen merchandise I had also got busted for before as a young adult before joining the MC. The dirty cop I beat in the alley pressed charges, and the drugs that Feather planted on me fucked me over. The District Attorney was aiming for attempted murder, and thank God that didn’t stick, but the assault charges did. The cop lost his eyesight in one eye and had a long recovery time after his stay in the hospital.
I turn and look at the crew behind me, nodding my goodbyes. Facing all their furious faces just makes it worse for me. Nothing can be done because I am partly to blame. Turning my head, I face the future I’m dealt and know that I can be out before I’m thirty.
‘I’m fucked’ is all I can think. If there are any other cops out there ready to take out Brad’s death on me, I’m into some deep shit on my own. The guard instructs me to follow him through the hallways, and everything turns into a blur from that point on. My fingerprints, pictures and clothes are taken until all I am is a number in custody of the state.
I run on auto pilot, refusing to accept my fate, and lie down on the cot in the room before the cell door slams behind me. I feel like my head is in a haze and I have no idea how I got here. I’m dressed down in a bright orange jumpsuit and some cheap tennis shoes. My eyes are fixed on the clothes as I fight the urge to not take my anger out on the man that’s sitting in the cell with me. Even as he taunts me with words of being some man’s dick holder, I fight it, knowing this little cunt could be doing a dirty cop a favor, so I ignore him.
At night, the minutes ticking by are the slowest of my life. There is no way I could fall asleep. The anger has cut too deep into me for that. Tattooed on my mind like a constant running movie. Day breaks and the guard comes in to cuff my hands around my waist with a chain and a shackle on my ankles, making my strides shorter as I follow the guard to start my two-year sentence in the state pen as I’m catching a bus over to Carson City.
I get on with a few other new inmates, and we hit the highway. A roar of bikes catches my attention as my brothers pick up speed, following Blade to pass up the bus. None of them look up, but the meaning is there, they will be with me to the end. Brothers by choice and not blood, Battle Born to the end.
Once we reach our destination, we are given a tour of our stay here. I instantly start cataloging names and faces. knowing that they are all the enemy here. I’m given a cell with an older man who doesn’t even acknowledge me when I’m shoved in, with the door slammed shut behind me.
The first month is the hardest, having no contact with anyone on the outside. Somehow, Stryker did manage to set me up in a cell with an affiliate of a sister club, and the old man has pretty much left me alone except to give me a few words of advice. Keep your mouth shut. Stryker has you celled with me. If you do solitary time, you’re fucked.
Later, I learn that his name is Loco, and he keeps his mouth shut almost all day long. He listens and gathers intel as far as I can tell. It’s going to take some time before either one of us will trust each other, if ever. We get into a routine of breakfast and then yard time. I watch his back while he works out, then he watches my back so I can do the same. Lunch, and then yard time.
I smoke like a motherfucker while I daydream of killing Feather about a hundred different ways. I wish I could do it. No, I wish I could go back and choke the fuck out of the cunt in the first few seconds of meeting her. Then a tough realization hits me. She should have had our son by now.
It’s been, I don’t know, a month or more, before I am allowed visitors, so I’m surprised when a guard grabs me from my cell to take me to a room with tables and guards. Solo and Blade sit there waiting for me. I grab a seat across from them.
“What’s up, brother? You holding up okay with Loco?” Blade asks but his eyes search me for any visible signs showing that I’m not.
“Fucking great,” I sarcastically say, getting more comfortable in my seat. “What’s up with the club, shit going good?”
“Aye, brother, we got that shit handled. Dana had the baby not long ago.” Blade looks me dead in the eye for a moment, and I’m almost confused before realizing that he’s is talking about Feather. He gives me the birth date, along with the stats. The kid weighed six pounds at birth and is very healthy. “She had some complications after the baby was born, but all has been taken care off.”
I wish I knew the details, and, one day, I will. Blade fills me in on more small things before Solo takes his turn. “Tami wrote you a letter, but I didn’t send it to you. It’s about Cash.” She wrote me a letter about my son, my baby that’s now our baby. There isn’t a thing I would want more than to read that letter, to see her words and hold them to my heart. My entire body literally aches from the pain.
“Don’t send them to me, I cannot know the details.” My heart shatters and my voice cracks. “She can’t ever come here, none of the kids or Ol’ Ladies.” Because I can’t see her beautiful face, the face of a future I was robbed of, with the woman I wanted. I think all that but don’t have the strength to say it out loud even in a whisper, the regret is so strong. It will never be safe for her or our son to be seen here without raising questions since the guards know I fucked Feather. I’ll never be able to write her back either in order to keep them safe. Tami may never forgive me for this, and I’ll never know what Solo will tell her, but love is a sacrifice I will do only for her and my son.
Before Blade leaves, he says he has photos to show me of his kids, but it’s of Cash and Tami, my whole world. I stare and memorize them together before he takes them back with him.
I feel lost to the world for now, destined to live in a hell I never wanted, and the anger grows thicker than the pain.