Title: Family Ties

Author: Girl Who Writes

Feedback: is beloved :)

Pairing: all canon implied, but none really

Word Count: 639

Rating: PG

Genre: Humour

Summary: When Angel had died, it was like all their roles in the group had been questioned; they'd been picked up and thrown in the air and landed in the wrong place.

Spoilers: Movie and musical.

Warnings: Language

Disclaimer: Property of the Jonathon Larson estate, I make no profit.

It didn't happen over night. Or if it did, Mimi sure didn't notice it. But sometime after her miraculous recovery, something changed. At everyone's insistence, she saw the New Year in from her hospital bed, and it was hard to really pin point the second everything fell into place between doctors poking her and having drugs pumped into her.

But by the end of January, back at the loft, something had definitely changed. And it wasn't just that Collins had 'paid' (well, liberated the cash) for the roof to be repaired and for the heating to be installed, or that Joanne had insisted that the loft be cleaned before Mimi's homecoming. It was just in the little things.

When Angel had died, it was like all their roles in the group had been questioned; they'd been picked up and thrown in the air and landed in the wrong place. And since last October, they'd been stumbling around trying to find their way back. But Angel was gone, and there was no turning back.

There was Maureen in the kitchen, trying to make some fancy dessert, with Mark fussing around her, trying to prevent the mess that would ultimately prevail. Mimi stifled a giggle as Maureen knocked over a pitcher of custard, sending a yellow-coloured wave across the metal counter, where Roger happened to be sitting, plucking out notes on his guitar.

"FUCK!" The custard had met Roger's jeans and he'd leapt off the table with a yelp, clutching his guitar high over his head as if to protect it, yellow goop dripping down onto his boots. "MAUREEN!"

It was then that Joanne and Collins looked up from where they were discussing something – most likely one of Collins' old thesis papers on law and philosophy that Joanne had read and fawned over.

"Maureen." The look on Joanne's face was disapproving and Collins was trying to stifle a laugh at the tableau before him – Mark up to his elbows trying to clean the mess, Roger with his guitar still over his head, standing in a puddle of the ruined dessert, and the wounded look on Maureen's face.

Somehow, when they'd found their way forward again, it had been some sort of whacked out family dynamic, with Joanne and Collins roping them all in, reminding them that legally they were adults, and yes, it probably was a bad idea. There was Roger and Maureen, like bickering siblings. Mark shifted from the baby of the group, to something that Mimi herself couldn't define – being the witness had leant Mark a wisdom that was both tragic and fascinating.

Mimi tossed her magazine aside and reached for Mark's camera, tentatively winding and pressing buttons until it sounded like it was recording and focused on the arguing group in the kitchen.

"Eight P.M, EST, January 15, 1991," Mimi began, mimicking Mark's narrating style. Mark looked up from where he was still mopping up the mess on the floor. "I witness Mark actually cleaning something."

"Oh no," Roger grinned evilly at her.

"You did not touch his camera," Maureen had an equally devious look on her face.

Mark tossed the cloth at Maureen. "Mimi Marquez," he said in what Mimi was sure he would consider threatening. And Roger shielded Mimi from Mark, as Mimi cackled, continuing to film.

"Run Mimi!" Maureen clapped, jumping up and down as Mark tried to get back his camera, Mimi darting out of the way every time he reached for it.

And it was probably the most fucked-up family in all of New York, but Mimi was pretty much positive that none of them would change it for the world.

Well, Mark did want to kill her just a little bit when he realized she'd taped over an incident with Roger and a mouse, but the footage she'd shot was worth it.