“No relation,” a female voice said, and I twisted to see Artemis.
“Are you sure?” I asked aghast that two men so similar weren’t related.
“Yup, Axel and Bear don’t share blood,” she confirmed.
“How do you grow them so big? Is it requisite that MC’s have a brother that huge?” I asked.
“Nah, but those are two of the gentlest men you’ll find,” Phoe said approaching and hooking me in a hug.
“Hi Phoe,” I said, smiling and returning the hug.
“We’re your welcoming committee, we get together often. Drake said everyone couldn’t come because of overwhelming you and after today’s update, well…” I thought Phoe’s ‘well’ summed up my day.
“Welcoming committee?” I asked.
“Welcome to Hellfire and the larger family, you understand your position?” Phoe asked, throwing herself down in a chair. She stared around and then hollered at a man I didn’t know for drinks.
“Shit, honey, you don’t know?” the blond woman said, sitting down, “I’m Silvie.”
“Hey,” I said absently trying to figure out what they meant.
“Clio as Chance’s old lady, you have power and a position. You become the President of the old ladies shall we say? You outrank everyone and anyone female in the club apart from me because I’m a sister. But if you asked me to do something, I’d have to consider it, because you’re Chance’s old lady. You’re the female counterpart of Chance,” Phoe said, and I sat forward.
“Explain,” I demanded, and Phoe smiled.
“When the President of an MC takes a wife, that woman gets power, they have to be extremely careful about who they get together with. If she’s weak, the old ladies and skanks will walk over her and not have respect. Get in their faces, she’ll not get respect again, she’ll command obedience but not respect. If you ask a brother to do something, they’ll do it because they see you as speaking for Chance. Abuse that, and while they’ll do it, they’ll do it in a way you’ll know they’re unhappy.
Tati has been Queen Bee for so long, she didn’t have to fight for her place, it came naturally. Now let’s take me for example, I’m Queen Bee, but I have an inner circle same Drake does, I have Marsha who is the mother figure and calming presence. Artemis and Autumn are the enforcers, a skank oversteps, Artemis, Autumn and I put them right, usually with fists. We have Silvie who everyone loves but provides the advice and steadiness, she’s the one the old ladies go to with problems. It’s our job to protect the other old ladies.
Tati is like Marsha, the mature old lady with loads of experience and you can learn lots from her. She’s so genuine and kind, she’s pure gold. The other old ladies in your inner circle will come along, when you meet them, you’ll know who is who. You’ll find your enforcers and your sergeant at arms, you already have your Chaplin, Tati. Oh, church is on, Silvie can you finish this please,” Phoe said rising to her feet and walking into the inner sanctum with Artemis at her heels.
“First, you need to learn the brothers, what makes them tick, Bear is a big softie but holds a shit load of pain. Chatter rarely speaks, but he’ll kill anyone who harms a child, put yourself out there, be their friend and their sounding board. I can tell you now every Rage brother has sounded off to Phoe at least twice and they needed her to be there not judging them. Do the same, be their friend and don’t be afraid to poke at them a bit, you’ll know when not to pry.
Second, Tati may be in your face and genuine but the woman’s no fool, start playing games with her and Tati will fuck you right back. She’s been around years, the only surviving old lady, as Phoe said listen and learn. She’ll teach you everything about being a great old lady, a legend. Phoe is well on her way to be legendary for more than one reason. Emulate Phoe and Tati, and you won’t go, wrong honey, I know it’s overwhelming,” Silvie said gently.
“That’s a lot to take in,” I said, making bullet points in my mind.
“Yeah, but you’ll get there, and either Tati or a Rage old lady is always at the end of a line. Thirdly, don’t take the shit from skanks, you may or may not be a fighter, but you stand up to them. The minute you back down, you lose your alpha status, fuck you should have seen Phoe. Silk shirt, pencil skirt and four-inch-high heels and the woman flew straight after a skank and took her out. Phoe made her point, you’ll need to make yours.”
“I hate confrontation,” I said, and Silvie smiled gently.
“That’s fine too, hate it all you want but know when you have to lay the law down you can, fighting isn’t always the way. Discover what works for you, Marsha can quell a skank with a few well-chosen words, that’s a great knack to have. Finally learn your surrounding people, learn their ways and interests, it’s not getting to know them, it’s learning about them. Two different things, see how Ace is blank in the meeting like he’s not paying attention?” Silvie pointed to Ace, and she was right, his expression was blank.
“You could think he’s not interested, bored or whatever’s being discussed doesn’t concern him. In fact, Ace is furious, and he’s thinking, see near his hairline there’s a tiny twitch, that’s a sign of fury. See his middle finger tapping his leg under the table, that’s him thinking. I know Ace, but he’d never have told me those tells, those are what I learned about him. Be confident Clio, the brothers will give you a few breaks as they’ll know this world is new to you and they’ll expect mistakes.
You lose the brothers when you don’t learn from errors, they’ll not keep giving you chances, so be smart and creative Clio, learn. Find out what makes them tick, get to know them, learn those in your circle. That will also go for Rage, you’ll need to know your own club and us. Rage and Hellfire are family, and you alongside Phoe will be the two that lead the way. Just follow Phoe’s lead,” Silvie said and sat back. One of the women who’d accompanied Rage was sitting on the arm of my chair I noticed, and she was nodding.
“You have a tough job, honey, love your own club and learn to at least like or respect a second. You can do it, it’s not as difficult as it sounds, I’m Lindsey, Lowrider’s old lady,” she said, smiling.
“Hey,” I greeted. The women had given me much to consider, and I glanced across at Tati, who was bossing a man loudly. She caught my gaze and strolled over.
“Teach me, Yoda, I’m your padawan,” I said. Tati’s eyes opened wide and then she threw back her head and laughed as she caught my Star Wars reference. Then sitting down, she fed me small bites of the brothers.