- Author: Olivia Jaymes
Book online «Deceptive Truth: Cowboy Justice Association (Serials and Stalkers Book 4) Olivia Jaymes (urban books to read .TXT) 📖». Author Olivia Jaymes
The Cowboy Justice Association: Serials and Stalkers, Book Four
About the Author
Copyright © 2021 by Olivia Jaymes
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED: The unauthorized reproduction or distribution of this copyrighted work is illegal. Criminal copyright infringement is investigated by the FBI and is punishable by up to 5 years in federal prison and a fine of $250,000.
All characters and events in this book are fictitious. Any resemblance to actual persons living or dead is strictly coincidental.
Knox Owens flinched as the barred doors behind him slid shut and locked with a loud metallic clang. He'd already signed in and turned over his firearm for safekeeping, and he was traveling farther into the prison where uniformed guards stood watching his every movement with suspicion.
Gray. Everything around him was a particularly depressing shade of greenish-gray. The floors, the walls, even the ceiling. It only added to the overwhelming air of despair, sadness, and gloom mixed with more than a whiff of desperation. It was almost physically painful to be standing in these surroundings. It was as if there wasn't enough oxygen in the room and he had to struggle for breath, his chest excruciatingly tight.
It these gray walls could talk the stories wouldn't be happy. The gloom was that palpable; deeply dark and oppressive.
He didn't want to be here and he resented the hell out of it. It was all he could to keep going forward rather than turn back and forget all of this bullshit. He didn't need to actually show up at the parole hearing. He'd already written his letter to the parole board. They knew his feelings. They weren't a deep, dark secret.
But he'd promised his younger brother that he would be there. If it had been anyone else, he would have said fuck it and not even showed up, but he couldn't do that. Not to Randy. His brother said that it was important that all the family be there. Family was important to Randy. He still believed that the Owens clan could be happy, loving, and close. Knox had given up on that dream a hell of a long time ago. In a funny way, he admired his brother's optimism. Randy never gave up hope.
His entire family put the fun in dysfunctional.
To keep his own sanity, Knox spent as little time with them as possible. It had been over a year since he had seen Randy and more like two since he'd seen any of the others. He doubted anything had changed. Nothing ever seemed to. Luckily, he'd moved out of Montana for his job and that gave him a good excuse to stay away. He was always busy. It wasn't a lie. Even when he'd lived in Montana, he'd been the first guy to raise his hand to volunteer to work holidays. Getting shot at by criminals was far superior to spending Christmas Eve with his relatives.
Damn, I'm getting pessimistic in my old age. In a few years, I'll be yelling at kids to get off my lawn.
"You made it. I told Mom you'd be here."
Randy threw his arms around Knox and they hugged, slapping each other on the back.
"I did. How's business, little brother? Life treating you good?"
"Busy as all hell. Julia sends her love."
Julia was Randy's wife, a lovely woman who handled the paperwork side of the family business. Randy ran a heating and air conditioning company. Knox had even invested in it at the beginning to help his brother get a start. He was certainly the most successful of the Owens kids and he deserved it. He'd worked hard for it.
"Tell her I said hello."
"Tell her yourself," Randy shot back. "Come and visit. See the kids. They miss their Uncle Knox."
Randy and Julia also had three rowdy boys that liked to climb Knox like a tree and play wrestle in the middle of the living room floor. Every time he visited, he had to rest the next day. He didn't know how his brother survived. Those kids kicked his ass and then some.
"I miss them too. I'll make some time."
Randy jerked his thumb toward an open set of double doors. "We're all assembled in the waiting area."
"Who all is here?" Knox asked, delaying the inevitable as long as possible. He didn't want to go in there. Already a tension knot was building in his gut. When the Owens were all together the only certainly was uncertainty. Literally, anything could happen. Usually it was bad.
Randy shrugged. "Pretty much everyone. Patty, Diana, Sara, Cal, and Roman. And Mom, of course."
There was no of course about Knox's mother being there. Their dad had left Alexa Loudon Owens years ago when Knox was only a teenager. Since then, Benjamin Owens had been married four more times, and always to the nicest women that Knox had ever met. Every one of them had been far younger than Ben and had somehow missed - or ignored - all of the red flags that came along with him. They were genuinely nice and sweet and they seemed to think they could change or save Ben by loving him a lot. If they'd asked Knox, he would have told them that it was a waste of time but no one ever had and he, for the most part, kept his mouth shut.
Benjamin Owens could be a smooth, charming son of a bitch when he wanted to be.