Treading the Traitor’s Path: Out Bad
Fate is a fickle mistress. No matter a man’s desires, she tends to give with one hand, and take with the other. Good or bad, it doesn’t matter to her, as long as there’s balance.
Ralph Lewis, otherwise known as Po’Boy, made one decision that changed the trajectory of his entire life. On the losing end of a schoolyard fight, he’d been on his back in the dust, glaring up at the boy who’d flattened him. Had watched unbelieving as that same boy stretched out his hand, offering to help Ralph to his feet. Against every instinct, he had accepted.
In that instant, he went from friendless pariah to having a partner and ally. For the first time in his life, he was respected… and feared. Po’Boy spent the next decade defending his position at his best friend’s side. Life was good. Fate has a way of taking back the reins, though.
A long-ago action places him directly in the crosshairs of their enemies, and circumstances force Po’Boy’s hand. Members of motorcycle clubs, men like him who live an outlaw’s life don’t treat kindly with traitors, and in their world, that is what Po’Boy has become.
With events threatening to pull him away from everything he holds dear, he’s made to walk a careful line to keep those he loves safe. Bound by silence, for his brothers’ sake, he’ll suffer through the worst thing that can happen to a man who lives and breathes the brotherhood. Out Bad.
Life begins at the end of your comfort zone. ~Neale Donald Walsch
“Treading the Traitor’s Path: Out Bad is a solidly engrossing, well-written novel by a talented author.
MariaLisa deMora delivers a thrilling ride filled with exciting suspense, deliciously explicit, vivid sex scenes, and gritty, fast-paced action. Her characters are smart, complex, and strong with sharp edges. The settings meticulously detailed.
Fans of Motorcycle Club romance stories will not want to miss this second installment in deMora’s exciting series.” – NY Literary Magazine
In this story, Penny’s culinary skills are on display again, and while she might be cooking individual dishes at the time, her intention is to have enough leftovers to provide a basis for a good jambalaya. Here’s her recipe, which actually is mine.
Cheatin’ Quick Jambalaya
What you need in your fridge:
- Two pounds cooked ham, chicken, or a mix of the two, chunked
- One pound fried sausage, boudin preferred, chunked
- Creole spices like Tony Chachere’s, Zatarian’s, or King Creole
- Small amount flour
- One cup chicken broth
- Green onions
- Sweet onions
- Bell peppers
- Two cups cooked rice, dirty or white
- 10-12 ounces whole corn, canned or frozen, drained
- Oil or grease, enough to coat a large skillet
Want to make your own creole spices? Easy ’nuff:
- Combine a quarter teaspoon each of onion powder and garlic powder. Add a dash or more of oregano, basil, thyme, black pepper, white pepper, cayenne pepper, and paprika. Salt to taste.
- Heat the skillet until a drop of water dances in the oil.
- Veggies get cut up and tossed in with the meat. Don’t overcook, remember the meat is pre-cooked, so you’re just heating that stuff up. Veggies should be softened, but not cooked through.
- Dust contents of skillet with flour and season to taste, and stir to coat evenly. Add broth and bring to a boil for a minute, stirring to keep from sticking. Add rice and corn in small amounts, stirring. Takes a few minutes, but once everything is good and hot, you’re ready to serve your cheatin’ quick jambalaya.
Po’Boy waited in silence, or as much silence as he could manage. It was hard and becoming more difficult by the second as the pressure on his hand increased. Twisting his neck, he looked, even as he told himself not to, and saw the balloon-like swelling of his fingers, skin stretched taut. Purple with pooling blood, he didn’t know how much more strain his flesh could take without bursting. For a moment he reconsidered the silent thing, because while screaming wouldn’t help, it couldn’t hurt.
The trap was simple, and elegant. Noose around his ankle, tight and secure, positioned where he couldn’t reach. It had been laid in a hallway, rag rug tossed over it to conceal the presence of the rope. All it took was him creeping through the darkness looking for Deuces, and a step in the wrong place. Snap, the trap tripped, and he’d been dragged down the hallway like a rabbit lure at hound races.
The one on his hand was harder to explain, but he remembered reaching out for something, anything to slow his terrifying rush up the hallway. Pulled to a jolting stop, his shoulder joint stretched to near breaking, anchored to a point somewhere along the path. Once the shock wore off, he’d looked up to see a thin wire wrapped around his hand and wrist. But the motor pulling on his leg hadn’t stalled. Oh, no. That bitch is quality machinery. Fuck. Hadn’t stopped and was actively pulling, whining as it worked overtime to continue its job. The wire around his wrist was small, thin, and looked disturbingly like a cheese slicer against his skin.
Images from text books ran through his mind, of men suspended from ropes, tied to four horses, one for each appendage. Drawn and quartered, but in his case he figured it was halved. The sound of the motor changed, nearly stalling, and he hoped this meant the clutch was giving out. Fucking finally. Then another sound rattled through the hallway, and he twisted his head to look towards the front of the building. Standing in the opening was a man. He wasn’t moving, was just standing there quietly. From the tilt of his head, Po’Boy knew he was looking down at him. Not moving, not jumping to help, not saying anything.
Not friend, then. Can’t hurt to ask. It did hurt like a motherfucker just to lay there, so asking was where he’d head.
“Little help?” Rough and hoarse from holding quiet for so long, Po’Boy watched as the man’s head swung back and forth, slowly. “Oh, come on, man. You can’t be fuckin’ serious.”
“As a heart attack,” the man told him, stepping forwards and into the light shining through a window in a room opening onto the hallway. Slender, with long red hair pulled low on his neck into a simple queue, the man looked like anyone you might pass on the street. Nondescript, dressed in clothes which wouldn’t pull someone’s gaze twice. He was everybody, and nobody. “You’re in quite the pickle, Po’Boy.”
Well, fuck. If he knows who I am, then I’m screwed. The motor whined and stuttered, then caught, and at the resulting yank, Po’Boy felt the cable around his hand break the skin, finally.
Copyright © 2017 – MariaLisa deMora