Character/Pairing: Cruz, Tomás, Cruz/Tomás
Summary: It was all in a days work.
Trigger Warning(s): Murder
Translation notes: mi amado – my beloved; mis hijos – my children; tráemelo – basically “go get him”
Waving a hand out before herself, Cruz took a deep breath of the crisp morning air and exhaled slowly. A smile slowly spread across her lips as she adjusted the purse strap on her shoulder and tugged the scarf up a little more under her chin.
“Mornings are starting to get a bit colder. I’m not sure I’ll be able to get away with wearing my dresses soon. Pity, really.” She sighs softly.
Tomás walked beside her in his usual silence. He tugged at his own scarf under his tan trenchcoat and gave a quiet grunt in response. Cruz chuckled and halted her footing before she gestured to him.
“Come, let me fix that. It looks awful.” Her gloved fingers were extended to him and Tomás approached her without question.
He tilted his head up slightly to give her proper room as she removed the scarf entirely and started to tie it off properly once again. “Maybe we should stop into a cafe and have a nice cup of coffee? What do you think? It feels like the start to a beautiful day. Something good is going to happen today; I just know it.”
Tomás stared absently at the building behind Cruz for a moment. It wasn’t a matter of whether or not he actually wanted coffee – Cruz had made the suggestion and it was more habit than anything else to simply agree to whatever she said. It was never a struggle. Tomás didn’t ever have any issues with going along with Cruz anywhere she wanted.
He was eternally neutral – down the the deepest parts of his core.
“That sounds like a good way to greet the day. The sun is barely up yet.”
Cruz’s smile somehow brightened and she tucked the ends of his scarf back into the collar of his coat, making sure to bunch it securely under his chin. She pat his chest in approval. “Then let’s go to that little shop on 38th. One of mis hijos told me they make the most delicious lattes she has ever tasted.”
She slipped her arm into Tomás’ and he placed a gloved hand over hers softly. Cruz looked up at him with an adoring smile and went to take a step forward… but she was suddenly hit from behind and she had to slam her heel down on the cement in order to keep her balance. She gasped in surprise and looked up quickly, wild eyed and she watched as some teenager made off with her purse.
But she didn’t react immediately. Instead, she stood slowly and smiled.
That smile was different though. It was business. There was a cruel sort of quirk to the corner of her lips as she watched the kid make his way further and further down the street. There was a familiar twinkle to her eye as she glanced back up at Tomás. “See? I told you something good was going to happen today.” She nodded toward the retreating teen and slipped her arm from his. “Tomás, tráemelo.”
He nodded firmly at that and without hesitation, he took off down the street in pursuit of him. Cruz watched him go with a smile and glanced around herself. Not another living soul was hanging about. The early morning hush was still lingering in the air. She smiled to herself and took a deep breath, letting it out with a pleasant sigh.
“Smart kid. Now let’s see how easily he’ll break…” She mumbled to herself, her smirk hidden as she started to walk forward. There was no hurried pace or urgency in her manner. Each click of her heels was made in a relaxed manner as she wandered up the sidewalk to catch up. When she got to a cross walk, she even stopped and waited for the appropriate time before crossing. She made sure to give the driver who stopped a thankful wave (which was returned) and went happily on her way.
Eventually, she caught up to the back alley she’d seen Tomás drag the boy into. She hadn’t been worried about whether or not Tomás would have been able to catch him. She had absolute faith in him, just as Tomás did with her. She never had to worry about Tomás falling through.
Sure enough, when she turned into the alley, there they were. The boy was on his knees, his hands in the air and shaking. This was due to the the pistol Tomás had between his teeth and was gesturing with a finger to his lips for him to be silent. The purse was forgotten, disgarded at Tomás’ feet when the higher urgency of life or death became apparent.
Cruz’s smile turned gentle then as she approached them. She tsk’d softly under her breath as her heels seemed to echo in this thin, empty space.
“Come now, Tomás. That’s a little cruel, don’t you think?” She placed a hand on the man’s upper arm and let her fingers slide down to his elbow. “He’s hardly a threat.”
He didn’t back off immediately.. but his arm relaxed slightly. “People can be unpredictable.”
Cruz bent down then and picked up her purse. She brushed some of the dirt off the side and offered it to Tomás for him to hold. Her serene smile never faltered. “I’ll be just fine.” She assured him before turning to face the boy. “He’ll behave himself – won’t you, boy?”
Cruz can see the tears leaking steadily down the kid’s face and he nodded quickly, his eyes wide in terror. Well, that didn’t take long.
“See?” She gestured the purse at Tomás again. “There is no threat here besides you.”
Tomás held his gun steady for a few moments longer… before he pulled it out of the kid’s mouth and wiped the barrel on his coat to be rid of the saliva. He then tucked it back into his jacket. He wordlessly took the purse from Cruz’ fingers and took a quiet step back. The kid collapsed, slumping back against the wall with his hand over his mouth in temporary relief. The shaking never ceased though and only seemed to get worse when Cruz finally bent down. She was sure to fix the edge of her dress as she did so, balancing on her heels and resting her forearms on her knees as she gave the kid a tender smile.
“Now, what is your name?”
The kid looked quickly between her and Tomás, his hand slowly slipping away from his trembling lips. “M-My n-name?” He stuttered.
“Just relax.” Cruz soothed. “Yes, your name. I’d like to know what to call you.”
The kid looked confused but clearly suspected he had no real place to question why the hell this stranger with a crazy ass boyfriend wanted his name. “It’s u-um.. T-Travis.” He swallowed thickly and tried again, his tone a little more steady. “My name is Travis.”
“Travis?” Cruz smiled. “Beautiful. I have a soft spot for anyone with a T-name. Now tell me, Travis. You seem like a smart and capable young man.” She reached out and brushed absently at his shoulder, like she was removing some dirt from his clothes. “Why would you be stealing women’s purses so early in the morning?”
“That’s none of your business!” He retorted but seemed to regret his rash bravery when Tomás lifted the hem of his jacket in silent threat. The kid looked down a little and pressed more against the wall.
Cruz, however, continued to smile. “It’s alright to be afraid, Travis. It’s probably better that you are.” She tilted her head. “But he won’t harm you. Not unless you give him reason to. Now in retort, it is my business. It was mypurse, after all.”
Travis looked up and gave her a weird look. “The hell is wrong with you, lady? What do you care?”
“You seem like a smart kid, Travis.” She gestured absently to the street. “Do you know when a burglar is most likely to break into your home?”
“What?” The boy looked confused by the seemingly random question, glancing between her and the opening to the road. “Why the hell would I know that?”
“8 am.” She answered immediately. “8am. See, people think that burglars usually come in at the dead of night when everyone is sleeping. It’s a common thing to assume. Nobody would be awake, the house would be completely open and because it’s dark, it would be harder to see you.” She raised a fingers as she continued. “But what people don’t seem to realise is that at night is when you’re most on guard. Even if you feel completely safe, somewhere in the back of your mind, you’re expecting something to go wrong.”
“So?” The kid scoffed. “Lady, I don’t know what the hell you’re getting at.” He glanced nervously over to Tomás and then back at her. “I just needed some money. That’s all.”
“Now we’re getting somewhere!” Cruz clapped her hands together and smiled widely. “That sounds like a viable reason to try taking my purse. I look successful enough – you probably assumed an upper class lady such as myself wouldn’t bother to fight you for it. Of course, there was no way you could have known about mi amadoconcealing a weapon.” She reached over and tapped the boy’s nose lightly. “If you sold my purse alone, you could get yourself a couple hundred dollars.” She winked at him and chuckled softly under her breath. “But what does someone your age need that much money for?”
“I owe somebody, alright?” Travis finally snapped. “A lot of money. You looked pretty classy. I don’t know nothing about fashion but everything about you screamed rich.”
“Hmm… well, you’re right about that.” Cruz ran a couple fingers through her hair then, looking smug. “How much do you owe?”
“Was I not clear? The reason you were trying to steal my purse. How much money do you owe?”
“A lot – what the hell does it matter?!”
Tomás finally shifts, taking a single step forward again and his deep tone settled uncomfortably into the kid’s bones. “Answer the question.”
The kid seemed to try and press further into the wall before nervously looking back over to Cruz. “…..T-Ten.”
“….10,000 dollars, alright?”
Cruz looked surprised then and even glanced up at Tomás. “I heard that correctly, yes?”
The man gives a single nod and Cruz looks back over to him. “How did you rack up that much debt?”
“It wasn’t my fault, alright?” He retorted immediately and instantly became more animated. He gestured his hands randomly into his lap and into the air as he spoke. “I got jumped! I was supposed to be making the drop and suddenly these thugs come out of nowhere and jack the goods. There was 10 grand worth of merchandise in that bag! Now Teddy says if I don’t pay up, he’s gonna make sure I’m never heard from again. I don’t have that kind of money! I still go to high school!”
“Teddy?” Cruz questions, humming softly. “Teddy Jones?” She suddenly looked sort of bored.
The kid blinked. “…You know Teddy?”
“I’ve dealt with him a few times. He’s a bit of a thorn in my side, really. He’s always trying to dig his claws into my service.”
Cruz sighed and slowly stood up, adjusting the edges of her dress once again to ensure every fold was perfectly in place. She brushed her hair over her shoulder and looked down at the boy with a look of pure disappointment. “And I had such high hopes for you.” She sighed loudly and placed a hand to her hip.
“What are you talking about? What service?” The kid asks, starting to look a little paniced.
Cruz glanced over at Tomás, the joyous facade her face once held gone completely. “Should we be off then? That coffee is starting to feel more like a necessity now than a pleasure.”
He nodded firmly and lifted the side of his jacket, pulling out his pistol once again.
“W-Woah what are–” The kid questioned, holding a hand out before himself and before the sentence even had time to properly form, Tomás buried two bullets in his chest and lets off a third between his eyes. The silencer at the tip gave a few quick squeaks as the bullets passed it but the sound wasn’t even loud enough to echo through the alleyway.
The morning hush was still evident. There wasn’t even the distant roar of an engine as the body slumped and hunched awkwardly forward.
Tomás tucked the weapon away once again and Cruz claimed her purse from him. She took a couple steps back from the body as the blood started to pool before her heels and gave Tomás a gentle smile. “Shall we? If we hurry, we might be able to beat the morning rush.”
He gave a wordless nod and turned, offering her his arm. She slid forward and tucked her arm neatly into his, hugging it slightly to her chest.
With that, the alleyway began to echo once again with the sharp click of her heels as they continued down to the opposite side.
Their talk picked back up once again, the mood light and soft. Cruz spoke about all the shopping she wanted to do that day, telling Tomás about a particularly fetching dress she had seen in a window upon passing the other day. He told her she looked plenty lovely in the one she was wearing now. She slapped his arm playfully and laughed, the sound resonating through the alley they soon were walking away from.
The space between the buildings grew still once more. The pool of blood spread out before the lifeless corpse.
Neither of them so much as glanced back.
FIN ★ ☆ ★ Constructive critique always welcome!