Disclaimer: Yeah… I still don't own Fast and Furious anything. I wish. I'd share with Vin Diesel. A/N: Likely to have spoilers for all movies. BUT, FYI I am ignoring the part about Berlin.
Summary: My take on Letty's journey after Dom left her in the Dominican Republic. All important characters will be cannon. Letty/Dom.
It was hot as balls in Columbia. The digital read-out on her waterproof watch said 11:30 am, and the Latina was already soaked with sweat. She swiped her wrist across her perspiring forehead, avoiding the grease on her hand, and internally cursing herself for even getting out of bed so early. And not too many years back, she had thought L.A. was hot being stuck in a garage all day. Yeah, right. Days like these, she wished she had Dominic leaning over her bedside, tempting her from the cocoon of blankets for a cup of coffee. Letty missed him.
"Yo, chica! You missed a spot."
Ray Ramirez – her current, resident pain in the ass. He was a giant bear of a man. Skin a shade darker than Dom's had ever been, due to days working outside in the unrelenting sun. And he had his long hair pulled into a ponytail at the back of his neck. If he walked too close to her when he got her really riled up, Letty would reach out and tug on it. He lived in a little, light blue house across the street from her own yellow rental – and he was also the man she was temporarily working for. Today was her day off.
"What the hell are you rumbling about?" Letty scowled. The smirk on his face indicated a playfulness that she had definitely not been in the mood for lately.
"Under all the grease", he teased, walking towards her carport. "You've got a nearly clean spot of skin."
She rolled her eyes and ducked back under the hood of a little black pick-up truck. "Yeah, well, you know me, Ray. I never half-ass anything."
"No, you definitely don't. What bug bit your ass this morning?" he inquired cautiously. He was at least ten years her senior, and after six months, he knew the young woman currently dodging his penetrating glare, was a very private person. The woman had engaged in no sort of relationship with anyone – romantic or otherwise. The few she had made friends with had been out of necessity. She did not share easily. And he sometimes wondered what circumstances in life had chosen such a closed off route for her.
Out of his sight, Letty flinched. Urgency. That was the bug. The bug also went by the name Dominic Anthony Toretto. She forced some lightness into her voice as she tugged the rotted fan belt loose with a grimace. "No bug – except the spider that lives under my bathroom cabinet", she murmured. "But we've made friends. I'm just having issues under the hood of this truck. In all the years- I've never seen so much wrong with a car that was completely intact."
"You were almost done last week. What happened?" Ray ignored her little slip up, knowing that if he pursued the subject she would close up like a clam.
"Engine, carburetor, spark plugs, you name it. Now this damned fan belt- and something is leaking. I think it's the coolant. And when I was bouncing down the street in this metal contraption yesterday – the shocks need replaced – but the suspension needs fixed. It's shot to fuck. The only things working in this truck, besides the radio, are the brakes. I feel like bashing a wrench into something", she growled, looking disdainfully at the truck.
"As long as it's not my head", he muttered. Letty's eyebrows furrowed oddly, before shaking off the bit of emotion behind her eyes. "Well, that's what you get for a free truck on the side of the road", Ray said after a minute. "At least there wasn't a squirrels' nest in the undercarriage."
"Did you want something, Ray? Or did you just want to come point out that I need a shower?" she muttered. Her hair was falling out of its already messy bun. She wondered briefly what Dom would think of her hair since she chopped off half of its length. And her bangs had grown out far enough to tuck behind her ears or be pulled off her face with an elastic band. That was, of course, if she ever finally got a solid lead on her man.
That was her bug this morning. Nearly a year ago, she had seen the news feed about what had happened in Rio de Janeiro. Stupid idiot, she thought wryly – acting like some sort of Robin Hood with wheels. But that was her Dom. And she figured that their entanglement with Reyes hadn't been their fault at the get go. As things stood now, though, Letty figured that when she did catch up to his ass, she would more likely than not, chew him out and then give him a black eye before dragging him off to bed.
"You want some help with this, Letty?" Ray asked finally.
She sighed. There was no way she could get this done in time to leave by the end of next week on her own. She had already compromised her timeline once, and she wasn't willing to do it again. And she needed to talk to Ray about her finally taking off. The man wasn't stupid. He knew she was hiding out, laying low. Letty nodded. "Sure. I'd appreciate it."
Dominic stood on his wrap-around porch, watching his sister play in the sand with her almost five-month old daughter. His mouth tilted in a half smile as he remembered just a few weeks before Mia went into labor. She and Brian had been discussing baby names for nearly a month before it had been made official.
"Come on, Brian", Mia laughed. "We found out the sex of the baby months ago. The least we could do is name her."
"Mia, how the hell do you expect me to name something I haven't seen yet?" he rolled his eye. "Talk about closing the barn door after the horse ran out…"
"Brain O'Conner, our daughter is not a horse!" she insisted, wryly amused.
He groaned. "That's not what I said- I was using an analogy to make a point."
Dominic could hear them in the kitchen from where he was watching the thunder clouds roll in on the back porch. It looked like it was going to be bad. He shot a quick text to Elena suggesting she should stay home that night and once she confirmed, he headed inside, a huge clap of thunder following the slam of the screen door, startling everyone.
"Gonne be pretty bad tonight", Brian muttered at him, looking scrutinizingly out the large window. "We may have to camp out in the basement."
"As long as the power doesn't go out", Mia frowned. "All the food in the fridge will be spoiled."
"One rarely happens without the other, Mi", Dom reminded, taking a seat at the table with them.
"Where's Elena?" she asked curiously.
"Told her a storm front was coming in and to stay put. Her neighbor's got a basement; she'll probably go over there. I didn't want her driving in it", Dom said quietly.
Mia sent Brian to get the battery operated weather radio from the living area when the wind started to kick up a few minutes later. Dominic studied his sister's profile. It had been a long time since he had seen her happy like this. It had come in spurts over the years, but it was short lived and usually coming right before a major tragedy that blacked out the snippets of good. She had several frown lines from worry and she was barely twenty-six, but they had been turning into laugh lines over the last year as stress, heartache, and worry for her family's freedom became happiness, a sense of peace, and a new chance at making a home.
In this paradise of an island, Mia was his sunshine. Seeing her happy, almost made up for the loss of Letty in a way that Elena's friendship could not. He was glad she had put her foot down and demanded they not be separated. He almost laughed aloud. Had she not been pregnant, he might have sneaked off somewhere – and he would have regretted it.
But she had been nauseous, cranky, tired, and fit to literally stamp her foot at him like she used to when she was a child. When she was eight, he had been thirteen – nearly fourteen – and she had been a little tart even then. It had been three years since their mother passed, and she was sure she was lady of the house. She had become Suzy Homemaker as soon as she could see over the stove at eleven, but until then she chased after him to clean his room and wash up before supper – and their dad had just watched and laughed. It seemed Dominic's little sister could get him to do just about anything she wanted.
Dominic had always respected the hell out of his dad. Tony was a family man through and through. He provided for them as well as offering emotional support when needed – including but not limited to, braiding Mia's hair, giving Dom girl advice, and helping them with school projects. But Mia was his baby sister. And she had had him wrapped around her pinkie finger since the day she was born.
The lights flickered as Brian set the radio on the table, already turned on, and the man the droning about high velocity winds and hurricane warnings, or at the very least power outages. Case in point: their house – as the lights flicked off completely. Dom and Brian got up and grabbed some flashlights, making sure all the windows and doors throughout the house were locked, as Mia grabbed her own flashlight and the extra, along with a few new packs of batteries, and went to wait by the basement door. "Damn tropical storms", she swore under her breath.
"Aw, you know you love it", Dom chuckled coming up behind her waving the flashlight in her face.
She batted at him, scowling irritatedly. "You can tell me how much I love it if I don't go into labor", she snapped.
He blinked. "Christ, Mia, that's not even funny."
"No shit, Dom", she huffed.
Dom shrugged. "Well, Brian was a cop- they're supposed to have emergency training, aren't they?"
"That does not make me feel better", she said seriously.
"What's going on?" Brian asked absently, checking the level of kerosene in one of the lanterns.
"You know how to deliver a baby, don't you, O'Conner?" Dom asked seriously.
"I know how to deliver a- what now?" he nearly dropped everything in his hands. "Mia! Are you going into labor?" he shouted incredulously.
Mia started to giggle which turned to whole-hearted laughter at the shit-eating grin on her brother's face. "Thanks for that, Dom", she gasped, holding her stomach. "I feel better now." Then her eyes widened. "Shit- I have to pee."
"No, Dominic, I cannot wait until we get downstairs", she shouted as she skittered around the corner. He and Brian both heard the door slam shut.
Dom smirked at his future brother-in-law. "I thought you told me you absolutely 'weren't gonna panic'", he teased.
Brian grinned sheepishly. "It's a nice theory", he admitted. "But now would be the ultimate bad time for that. And you know as well as I do what our track record of luck is."
"My water just broke." Mia watched them both whip around quick enough to break their necks and give her own sympathy pangs. They were staring at her with identical gaping fish mouths. She snorted out a laugh. "Just teasing", she said finally.
Dom glowered at her. "When you pop that kid out, I'm gonna get you back for that. You damn near shaved five years off my life."
She just smiled. "Sure you will, Dom. Sure you will. So… who's giving me a piggyback ride downstairs?"
Dom had carried her into the basement, all the while muttering in playful annoyance what a pain in the ass little sister's are when they're as big as a manatee, making her giggle. She waited until he had settled her on the couch to pinch his stomach. "That's for calling me a sea cow", she said seriously, arching an eyebrow.
He chuckled, ruffling her hair. Dominic had thoroughly enjoyed Mia's pregnancy – she had been mostly normal despite the fluctuations in hormone levels. She cried over the littlest thing, like a commercial on TV. Nearly every song on the radio made her cry, but she took the light teasing in stride, and could dish it up just as well. And the last thing Mia had shouted about unnecessarily was a dish towel that was looking at her funny. Dom had gone outside for that one so she wouldn't catch him laughing. But she came back to her sanity just as quickly, and had shoved half of the towel into the garbage disposal to be ripped to shreds. While Brian had taken Mia into the living room to calm down, Dom had drawn a face on it with a Sharpie.
"You're gorgeous, Mia", he shook his head, "Look just like Mom."
Mia sighed wistfully. "I wish I remembered her more."
"You were barely seven… she'd be proud of you, Mia – Dad too. He'd probably tan my ass", he chuckled grimly, "But you've done a lot for this family."
Mia internally groaned and tugged her brother onto the couch next to her. "Don't you dare start that shit again, Dom, or I swear I'll smack you upside the head. Sometimes people are just shit outta luck and you just have to suck it up and move on. No one can change the past – not even you – and you have to stop living in it."
She held up a hand, "Sisterly advice. Let me have my say and then I'll shut up about it. You have the right to be happy, Dominic, whatever that entails. But that will never happen until you grieve over what happened to Letty." She shot him a look when he opened his mouth. "No, tearing a city down the middle is not grieving."
He sighed, scrubbing a hand over his face. "When the hell did you get so mouthy?" he complained under his breath.
"Your niece wants you to stop brooding", she smiled mischievously.
He chuckled. "You're gonna milk that one for a long time, aren't you?"
"Bet your ass I am."
He shook his head exasperatedly and settled his hand on her stomach. "Sorry, baby", Dom murmured. "Dammit, Mia, would you name this poor girl already?" he grinned.
Her head tilted thoughtfully as she chewed on her bottom lip. "Marisa", she said decisively after a minute. "After Mom- sort of", she explained.
He rolled it over briefly in his mind and nodded. "As long as she's not a mermaid", he teased.
"Oh, ha-ha", she rolled her eyes. "You and your Spanish…"
Brian finally carried the rest of the supplies down to the basement in case an extended stay was necessary and found Mia settled against her brother's side on the couch. His mouth quirked in a half smile as he set the large plastic container on the floor at the bottom of the stairs. Dom – under normal circumstances – probably would have helped him. But as Mia's pregnancy continued, he had been spending more time with her than Brian was.
Brian doubted it was a conscious decision. The Torettos had lost more than most in the way of family, and Brian doubted his future brother-in-law would appreciate the observation that he was hogging his sister from her fiancé. Mia was happy and relaxed, and for the most part not worried about her brother. So Brian could relax as well. He stretched out on the couch that was catty-corner to theirs.
"Hey, Brian, we named your kid", Dominic said after a minute.
That caught his interest. "You mean Mia actually picked something?"
She waved her hand at him. "Oh, you just shush", she scolded.
Brian grinned. "You gonna fill me in?"
"Our mother's name was Marisol… I picked Marisa", she said softly.
He nodded. "I like it. You know she still needs a middle name now."
Mia groaned and threw a small pillow at his head.
Dominic heard a car door slam and a few minutes later Brian was joining him on the porch, a few grocery bags in hand and he went to take the bags of food away. Now, it needed to be said that Brian couldn't cook for shit – hell, he could barely boil water without some weird catastrophe happening – so Dom or Mia took usually cooked dinner. Otherwise they got up take-out, or Elena took over their kitchen. That always amused Dom to no end. She was a very controlled person, especially when it came to her job, but in their kitchen… she was a mini tornado, and crumbs trailed across the counters and flour streaked her face. But the end result was always delicious, and they couldn't tease her too much about her cooking habits. And Mia rather enjoyed having another domestic woman in the house.
Letty was so sick of him leaving her. He had done it enough times over the years. She understood Dom better than even he understood himself, but the Dominican Republic had been the last straw. Letty may have understood why he had left in the middle of the night instead of giving her a proper goodbye in favor of leaving her a wad of cash- she rolled her eyes. "Idiot", she muttered angrily. He would never have been able to leave if he had to face her. She knew this, but that fact didn't absolve him of his transgressions – or his stupidity. And when she found his stupid, annoying, well-muscled ass, she was going to shove her foot up the crack.
She had been feeding the ire she felt towards him for months, knowing that if she didn't, she would just collapse into his arms again. But there was too much at stake this time, and he needed to see her unchecked fury – he would never understand otherwise. A swift kick in the ass was the doctor's order, and she intended to deliver. She wasn't a woman who needed much in the way of protection, and her needs were relatively simple. Both had been ripped from her when he left. She needed him – and anything else was just cannon fodder. Because after all that, if he still didn't get it… She didn't know if she could stay with him waiting for the other shoe to drop. She was not a freaking martyr.
And the fact that he thought she was dead – clearly obvious in his reckless actions – made him an idiot. If he thought for one second that if she were really dead, she wouldn't find a way to haunt his ass… she abandoned that train of thought and tried to fall asleep for a few hours before she had to catch her plane.
A/N: Chapter number one is finished. As always, reviews make me happy. Side-note: I haven't forgotten about my other story, and I'm still working on it, but sending my flash drive to a recovery center is three hundred dollars and I'm grinding my teeth over the idea of paying that much. As soon as I do, and get it back, hopefully my files will be intact, and I can post on a regular basis. Just because I haven't updated doesn't mean there's been no writing going on. But those of you who were begging for a Dom and Letty chapter in that story will be happy with this one. Thanks.