A/N: Hey everyone! I know it's been more than 2 years since I've updated. But I found the time to update this one again. As with my other BDS fic, "Even in Heaven II: Saints' Scourge," I have no promises to continue this story, but just wanted to update since it's been so long and I just didn't want to keep you all hanging! Thank you for all of your support over the years. I love all the reviews! Keeps me writing. Enjoy this one! xx IFHD

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Chapter 16: Fighting Irish

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"Devil"

By: Staind

She sits alone again and tries her best not to pretend that

all she used to live for was the love that wasn't there
And every time she needs to do the things that she believes will fill the void
inside of her cause he was never there

And she says,
"I swear I'm not the devil
though you think I am.
I swear I'm not the devil."
And she says,
"I swear I'm not the devil
Though you think I am.
I swear I'm not the devil."

He tries to sleep again and wonders when the pain will end the cuts they made run deeper than his cracking outer shell
He looks with tired eyes at all the people hypnotized and wonders what can save him from a self-created hell

I always fail to see the little things in front of me the things that mean so much to you, a way to let you know

That I appreciate the way you always tolerate but sometimes when I medicate
frustration in you shows me how you feel.

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Lita awoke to what she believed was the growling of a bear. With a start, she sat up from the bed, flinging the cover from her form in a motion of panic. Managing to calm her rapidly-beating heart and somewhat come to her senses after a few moments, she fought through her disorientation and recognized that she was, in fact, in Murphy's room. After another rumble erupted from her side, she realized that the 'call of the wild' that had so rudely roused her from her dreams was coming from none other than Murphy 'Snoreface' MacManus himself.

Capturing his nose in between her dainty fingers, she gave it a little pinch as she mused, "Quite sexy, MacManus. You never cease to turn me on."

The Saint wrinkled his nose in displeasure and replied with another unconscious grumble.

"Oh, for the love of…" With a grunt, Lita gave Murphy a playful shove. However, she somehow miscalculated her own strength and managed to cause the Irishman to roll from the bed…

…and, in all his bare glory, fall flat on this stomach on the floor with a violent thud.

She instantly winced and bit her bottom lip. "Shit!" Wide-eyed, Lita peeked over the edge of the bed, surveying the damage that she had caused.

Well I'll be damned, she thought to herself. Somehow, the Irishman remained fast asleep. Murphy did, however, groan with displeasure at the loss of warmth. In a zombie-like fashion, he absentmindedly felt for the covers around him. He simultaneously frowned and shivered when he found no sign of them. Then, finally finding the tip of the blanket from the edge of the bed, he repeatedly pulled at it with a murmur and somehow managed to roll himself inside the fleece. He proceeded to lie on the ground contentedly, akin to a toasty cinnamon bun. After only a few more moments, he retained his deep sleep and ensued to snore in a fashion that would make dinosaurs proud.

"I guess no sex in the mornings, ol' chap?" Lita quipped with a smile of adoration. After she took another moment to observe the Tyrannosaurus Rex below her, her eyes descended towards the nightstand beside the bed. Seeing that the digital clock read the ungodly hour of 7:00 am, she reckoned that neither of the other two MacManuses would also be up. Heaving out another sigh and giving her body a little stretch, Lita then stood and loosely wrapped another blanket around her body. Kissing the sleeping dinosaur on the cheek, she quickly grabbed some garments from the heap on the ground and mindlessly placed them on. Parched, she resolved to grab a quick drink from the kitchen before hopping into the shower.

As she made her way through the corridors of the MacManus apartment, her mind flashed through memories of the passionate night that had just passed. Something had definitely changed within her in a matter of a few hours – in a matter of a few moments, even. She felt…content…for once in her life.

Her hypothesis about neither of the other two MacManuses being up was not so accurate, however. Just as she casually strolled into the kitchen, Lita spotted Connor in the adjacent living room, plopped down on the couch, clad in jeans and a simple tank top, and blankly watching television. He looked as though he hadn't received a decent night's sleep: his spiked hair was even more disheveled than usual; his eyes bloodshot; and his skin pale. Stopping in her tracks, Lita inwardly cursed to herself, realizing just how unpresentable she must have looked at that moment. As she whirled around on her heels and resolved to briskly walk back towards Murphy's room in retreat, she heard Connor call out after her:

"Fun night?"

Twisting her head back to meet his glare, she realized that he did not look pleased at all. In fact, he seemed absolutely livid. Seeing his steel-blue eyes scrutinizing her from top to bottom, it was obvious that the blonde Saint knew exactly what had transpired between her and his brother the previous night. Turning off the television and flicking the remote control to his side, all forgotten, Connor merely eyed her and patiently awaited her response. When Lita remained silent and stone-faced, he then stood and sauntered to her side. Crossing his arms in front of him, he stated bluntly and quite inappropriately, "Didn't know ye were sleepin' wid me brother."

Lita did not miss the iciness in his controlled tone. Disregarding the growing tension that mercilessly coiled itself around them, she confidently stepped towards the tall Irishman and, without hesitation, met his harsh gaze with equal measure. Unflinching, she retorted with, "Is there a problem with that?"

Connor let out a sardonic laugh as he began to massage his temples with his thumb and index finger. "I would think tha' it'd be apparent tha' there is." Fiery eyes locking into hers, he snarled, jaw clenched, "Ye were right 'bout tha whole kidnappin' thing, an' yer plan worked…but we still don't know who ye really are and yer intentions. Not ta mention yer tryin' ta kill us MacManuses, for Chrissake!"

"Let bygones be bygones. Your father and brother obviously have." Lita momentarily tilted her head to the side, almost flirtatiously, before whirling on her heel once more and turning her back on the Saint. "And you want to get to know me even more, is that it?" When he didn't reply, she decided to try the Saint's patience even more, continuing to poke at him with, "Well, what's the fuckin' matter, Mick? Are you just pissed off because I fucked your brother and not you?"

As the latter statement escaped her lips, something had instantaneously changed within Connor's eyes. He didn't reply, though Lita saw his clenching jaw and the violent rage erupting in his sapphire orbs.

After a few moments of a standstill, Connor could not react calmly any longer. Finding his self control waning, he strode purposely to Lita's side and roughly gripped her upper arm. Literally breathing down her neck in sheer upset, the Irishman growled, "Don't ye fuckin' play wid 'im, ye 'ear me, woman?" He gave her a shake for good measure, looking to drill his message within her head. "Me threats aren't always empty. Don't take me mercy for weakness, love, 'cause they ain't tha same."

Albeit futile, she continuously pushed at his adamantine chest to relieve his hold. Knitting her brows and feeling the anger rise within her being, Lita shot back with, "And what makes you think that I'd play with him, huh? You don't know me, MacManus – you admitted it yourself!"

Connor took her other arm in hand and pushed her roughly upon the kitchen wall. He spat coldly, baring teeth, "Ye betrayed yer own brother, yer own family. Wha' other evidence do I need, huh?" From the moment those words fell from Connor's lips, he immediately regretted them. Why the fuck was he acting in such an abrasive manner? Deep down inside, the Irishman knew the answer, the truth. His defenses were overtly heightened for a different reason: convoluted emotions.

Lita pretended that Connor's latter statements didn't cut right through her. Finding that she had no idea how to verbally defend herself after what he had just so easily spat upon her face, she muttered in an almost appeasing tone, "The fuck's gotten into you? One moment, you're congratulating me on a job well done. The next, you're ripping my fucking head off!" She finally managed to shove him away from her form. "Maybe it's you who's the fuckin' headcase!"

In response, Connor turned his head dismissively away from her, jaw tight. "No matter what me brother or me Da feel about ye, ye ain't a guest in this house, Triad. Remember tha'."

As the lump that had formed within Lita's throat grew larger, she could only speechlessly watch as the Saint stalked away from her form. Narrowing her eyes in confusion, she observed Connor kicking his duffel bag from underneath the coffee table to expose it. Almost ripping it open, he ensued to empty out its contents in front of him. Desert Eagles, MAC-10s, and other weapons were then placed at his side. Drawn to his activity, Lita sputtered with furrowed brows, "W-what are you doing?"

"Wha' do ye think I'm doin'?" Connor didn't bother to look up at her and merely continued his current task. "I'm preparin' fer yer beloved brother's retribution."

She narrowed her eyes. "The fuck?"

Connor stopped for a moment and finally caught her glare. "Ye really think tha' there wouldn't be any consequences ta all o' this? We know yer brother's kind. He doesn't give a fuck about how many men he loses." He easily cocked the Desert Eagle and set it aside. Onto the next weapon. "But if it's his pride that's wounded, he's bound ta avenge tha' sooner or later. Who knows wha' he 'as up his sleeve?" Letting out a snort, he muttered, "An' now tha' we 'ave his dear sister as hostage…"

Lita didn't know what to think. She knew that her plan of kidnap and hostage would come with a shitload of consequences, but she never envisioned that a fucking battle would ensue this soon. What did you think would happen, you idiot? That your brother will let the Saints go, scot-free, with you as their hostage? She didn't fucking think ahead, that was the problem! She was just so preoccupied with getting Murphy the fuck out of her brother's lair that she completely overlooked what she would exactly do after the plan was carried out. Feeling helplessness, she blurted, "We had a fucking deal, MacManus! You have your brother. Now leave mine the fuck alone!"

"I ain't goin' after 'im, love, 'cause there's no need ta." Connor casually sauntered across the room to stand before her. Peering down towards her, he murmured, "He'll come fer ye. All we gotta do is wait."

Fuck.

She knew he was right.

Nevertheless, she stated with a tilt of her chin, "I can't let you hurt my brother. Like I said, after this arrangement's been taken care of, you'll have to go through me to get to him." She stepped up to him fearlessly, straightening her spine in challenge. "And now that the arrangement's been successfully completed…"

"Wha', yer gonna stop me?" Connor let out a dismissive snort as he gave her an once-over. "And now ye decide ta show a bit o' loyalty ta yer brother?"

Although Lita remained silent for a moment, her inactivity did not last long. Her next action caught Connor completely off-guard. With a full swing of her arm, Lita sent her clenched fists upon the left side of Connor's face. The blonde Irishman grunted as his neck violently snapped to the side. Using his moment of lessened defenses, Lita gripped the collar of his beater, pulled him towards her, and sent another blow to his abdomen. Feeling her knuckles crack at the impact, she let out a cry of pain. Meanwhile, Connor doubled over, though made no move to retaliate.

Though, just as Lita was about to throw another punch – this time strategically aimed at his neck – Connor whirled away from her in evasion. "Tha' wasn't very nice, now was it?" He spat in an icy tone, quickly recovering from her attacks. As he stood behind her, he pulled at the back of her shirt and ensued to coil his taut arm around her neck in an effort to contain her.

"Oi!"

Lita could hear Murphy's panicked footsteps come from behind her. As she struggled to see what was transpiring, she then felt herself being released from the chokehold. Greedily gasping for breath, she took a few steps forward before whirling around to face the MacManus twins. The brothers glared at one another, their open stances identical.

Murphy's orbs were afire with rage. He was unable to contain his emotions as he wrathfully shoved his twin and pinned him upon the back of the front door. With a snarl, he growled, "The fuck are ye hurtin' 'er fer, eh?" He struggled with the blonde Saint for a while, though managed to keep a hold of him in the end. Tightening his grip on Connor's shirt, he snapped, "The fuck's wrong wid ye, Con? 'ave ye completely lost it?"

"Get off me!" Connor grunted with a jerk of his body; though, his anger was clearly directed to Lita. With a circle of his hand, he explained, "This ladyswung at me first. Seems as though she can't 'andle tha truth, Murph." Finally regaining his collected composure, Connor straightened out his clothing and stepped away from Murphy. Contemptuous eyes landing upon Lita, he snarled without hesitation, "Get 'er outta 'ere, Murph. She'll just cause us more trouble, and it ain't fuckin' worth it." Fixating his attention once more on his duffel back, Connor added, without turning around, "We still don't even know if all o' this is just a grand set-up."

"Yer talkin' a load o' fuckin' bollocks, Con!" Murphy shot, though couldn't help the feeling of being torn. Looking for aid, his eyes met Lita's gaze. "She 'elped ye an' Da rescue me widout 'avin' any connection ta 'er brother or 'is men. Ye knowtha' she can be trusted."

"Sleepin' wid someone doesn't make 'em automatically trustworthy, Murph."

At Connor's snide remark, Lita narrowed her eyes, enraged, and made a move towards him once more. Murphy caught her in his arms almost instantaneously, holding her back and hushing her in an effort to appease her. She automatically attempted to push Murphy away, eyes, mind and body all intent on their target. Though, the Saint clearly overpowered her, and he somewhat lifted her off the ground in order to separate her from his twin. "Ye know tha' was uncalled fer, Con," he proclaimed over his shoulder, able to keep his calm and even tone.

Connor let out a scoff. "Ye really need ta start thinkin' wid yer brain, Murph, an' not just yer 'ead."

Lita could see the expression instantaneously change upon Murphy's countenance. Taking a deep breath, the dark-haired Irishman loosened his hold upon her and ordered, "Go ta me room, Lita."

Orbs roaming his face, she retorted with, "What am I, five?"

Murphy threw her a pleading look, clenching his jaw as he repeated more firmly, "Go on. I'll deal wid this."

Unflinching, Connor strode to his twin's side before handing him the duffel bag. Barely heeding the daggers that Lita stared at him, he managed to say in a controlled tone, "Yer gonna 'ave ta deal wid 'er brother b'fore ye deal wid yer own. So arm yerself, Murph. It won't be long 'till Luis an' 'is men find us."

Murphy unsurely eyed his brother's outstretched arm and the bag that he held in his hand. Feeling Lita's firm grip upon his arm, he met her stare with equal measure as she declared, "It was you for my brother, Murphy. Leave him the fuck alone, or I swear to you…"

Unbelieving of what Lita had just imparted to him, his gaze fixated upon his twin in search of an answer.

"Tha' may 'ave been tha deal, Murph, but ye know tha' 'e's gonna come fer 'er, sooner or later, an' will be intent on blowin' our 'eads off in the process." Connor pushed the bag firmly upon Murphy's chest, continuing to insist. "So are ye just gonna stand there an' allow bullets ta rip through ye or actually defend yerself?"

Eyes landing upon Lita and his twin alternately, Murphy blurted out after a few moments, "I need a fuckin' cigarette." Then, pushing past them, he stalked through the front door and promptly slammed it behind him.

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A/N: Aww, Murphy! What'd you all think? =) Till next time! xx IFHD