Title: The Hands Of Heaven And Hell
Fandom: Leverage & Magnificent Seven ATF AU
Characters: Parker; Vin Tanner; Nettie Wells
Word Count: 927
Summary: Comment fic prompt: Touches in the dark.
Warnings: Implied child abuse; implied non-con underage sex
The thin figure that got off the bus in Denver was so bundled against the cold you couldn’t tell if it was a man or woman.
A quick perusal of the terminal and hooded eyes located the overflowing bulletin board. Getting a better hold on the backpack, the figure studied the posters and the street map.
Slipping out the door into the cold evening air, a brisk step gave the appearance of confidence though the eyes darted to and fro, always watching.
The neighborhoods became shabbier the further the figure walked. A block from the desired destination, a hand reached out of the dark to grab the backpack.
Fighting back, the person spun away from the grabbing hands.
“Well … Well, what’s all this?” A teen on the verge of adulthood stepped into the light followed by several younger boys, all wearing the same colors.
“You’re awfully pale to be in this hood, chico … Or is it chica?” The laughs were low and cruel.
“Don’t matter, you’re still wrong.” Hands reached for the prize again.
The pale figure stood speechless with cold and fear as the boys tightened the circle. Then came the sounds of scuffling and whimpers of pain alerting the leader something was wrong.
“Hijo de puta! This one is ours!” The leader sputtered, head turning, looking for the threat.
The new player to the scene put himself between the prey and the gang members. The remaining boys started forward until light flashed off a knife blade. They stopped. Not even for street cred was it worth taking on the crazy gringo Texan. They turned tail down the alley where they had started this confrontation.
He ducked down to slip his knife back in his boot when the air over his head whooshed. When he looked up he saw the backpack making a return swing toward his head.
His arm flashed as he caught the backpack and immobilized the silent figure.
“Hold on a dadgum minute. Ain’t gonna hurt ya none, girl.” He spoke soothingly.
The flailing arms stopped. “How’d you know I was a girl?” A strident voice demanded.
Shoulders shrugged, but the hands held her fast, but not hurtful. “Just know stuff sometimes. If ya promise not to hit me in the head, I’ll take ya someplace safe ’til I kin git ya to Nettie’s tomorrow.”
“What’s a Nettie’s?” The girl asked suspiciously.
“A safe place for skinny girls.” He teased a little. “Got a name ‘sides skinny girl?”
She huffed a little in exasperation. “Parker.”
“Well come on then, Parker. We need to git off the street. Name’s Vin.” He led her in the opposite direction from the gang.
They ended up at an abandoned warehouse. There were other squatters on the lower floors, but Vin took her up high. There tucked in a back corner, he’d made a place where no one could reach him. He gave her his blankets and told her he’d keep watch so she could sleep.
Chilled, wary and exhausted, Parker decided Vin was okay, and like a feral cat that’d found a home, she curled against his side and went to sleep.
The next morning Vin took her to the shelter that had been her destination the night before. He introduced her to Nettie Wells and assured Parker that the older woman could be trusted.
Wanting to reassure the blonde girl that things would be okay, he pointed to the bulletin board.
“Ya need me for anythin’, ya leave a message on that board. I come by couple times a day to help Miz Nettie with chores, I’ll find it. He gave her a little hug before leaving her with the older woman.
Vin had told the truth when he said Miss Nettie would find her a good place where she wouldn’t be hurt. She and Vin continued to communicate via the bulletin board.
Parker questioned Nettie about Vin, but all the older woman would say was that there were some wild things that you never could coax inside.
They’d meet when the rest of the world was asleep, and they’d challenge each other to be better thieves. They always put back what they stole–almost—there were some things Parker couldn’t resist.
Vin taught Parker how to live under the radar, how to be invisible, and how to protect herself.
Parker taught Vin not to apologize for who he was, how to laugh, and the beauty of explosions.
A few days after their graduation, she left him a note to meet her at their favorite spot in Cheeseman Park. By the light of the full moon he found her.
“Parker?” Vin’s voice was quiet.
He settled cross-legged on the blanket with her. “What’s wrong, girl?” He reached for her hand.
Drawing in a breath and letting it out, she started talking.
“You know how I’ve never liked the dark?” Vin nodded. “It’s because hands always came out of the dark, touching, and the hands touching in the dark always hurt.” She stopped to compose herself.
Vin gave her hand a squeeze of encouragement. He knew all about the hands and touches she was talking about.
“Then I met you, and the hands touching in the dark didn’t hurt anymore. I want you to make the bad hands touching go away, so only good hands touching come out of the dark.” She proclaimed in her straightforward fashion.
Vin gave Parker a quiet gentle smile as he cupped her cheek with his hand.
“Your wish shall be my command.” He whispered softly against her lips.
And it was.
~ Fini ~