A/N: Yes, yes, another story... With many I haven't finished or updated... So sue me, I was bored... Anyways...

This is an A/U fic, focusing on the McQuaid brothers.

Warnings: Torture, extreme child abuse, drug use, etc.

Sixteen year old Tommy McQuaid groaned as the sun cast a ray of light directly in his face.

"What time is it?" Came the muttering voice of his older brother Doug.

"Too damn early," Tommy snorted, slowly climbing out of bed. "Come on; Jack'll be home soon."

Doug muttered under his breath as he sat up, yawning as he stretched. "When the hell is he goin' back on second shift? Him bein' home all the time freakin' sucks."

Tommy shrugged as he made his way to the dresser. "Does it matter?"

"Eh… I guess not." Doug's face hardened as his brother stripped his shirt off, revealing the younger McQuaid's torn up back. "I uh… You gonna be okay?"

Tommy shrugged again, the movement causing the cuts on his back to ripple grotesquely, making Doug wince.

"I'll be fine, Doug. Leave it alone," Tommy said in a tone that left no room for more conversation. "Come on. We gotta get outta here."

Doug sighed dejectedly as he started getting dressed.

Doug slowed his walk to match his brother's limp as they made their way to the bus. Each boy had a Marlboro in their hands.

Dough looked over at his brother. It was obvious that he was in pain, from the look on his face, to his left arm that he cradled to his chest, to the way he walked.

But even with that, Tommy looked deadlier than Doug ever would.

Not that Doug looked soft by any means; he just looked like a typical high school bad ass. As such, Doug routinely had to deal with other high school bad-asses.

Tommy though… Tommy looked like he would rather kill someone than look at them. Not too many people messed with Tommy McQuaid.

He hadn't always been like that. Doug remembered a time when they were younger, when Tommy had been the soft one. The kid who cried all through Bambi. Then Jack showed up, and now Tommy was the guy everyone was afraid of.

"Let's go, guys, I ain't got all day!" The bus driver yelled impatiently.

Doug flipped the older man the bird, as Tommy slowly made his way onto the bus. The two teenagers moved to the back of the bus, where Tommy stopped in front of what looked to be a freshman sitting the last seat.

"Move," He said curtly. The kid opened his mouth like he was gonna argue, but apparently thought better of it when he seen the look on Tommy's face.

Doug let out a sigh of relief as the kid scrambled past them, and Tommy plopped down in the seat, putting his head sets on, and blaring Slayer through his walkman. Doug sat down in the seat opposite of his brother, and watched in concern as Tommy curled up against the window, eyes slowly closing.

It'd been a rough weekend. Doug knew his younger brother was suffering from cracked ribs, and a sprained wrist and ankle at the very least. Not to mention the damage Jack had done to Tommy's back with his belt.

He glowered at the thought of his step-father. Marie McQuaid had divorced the boys' father when they were six and five, and married Jack Bugliosi eight months later. It hadn't taken very long for the honeymoon to end, and within a few months after the wedding, Marie's boys had learned that Jack had a mean temper, and fists like bricks. He'd never actually hit Marie, but she didn't stop him from 'disciplining' her boys as the two adults called it.

Both boys had been on the receiving end of Jack's temper, but for some reason, the one-time Marine had beat on Tommy more often than Doug. Maybe it was Tommy's size; the smaller McQuaid stood barely 5'7, and weighed in at a little over a hundred and forty pounds, compared to Doug's six foot, one hundred and eighty pound frame, or Jack's 6'4", two hundred and fifty pounds.

Whatever the reason, Jack Bugliosi seemed to take particular pleasure in beating the living hell out of Tommy. After three years with Jack, eight-year old Tommy had went from being exuberant, outspoken, friendly child, to the quiet, reserved kid who jumped whenever someone looked at him. By age twelve, Tommy had turned into a ghost of his former self, seemingly running through life on autopilot.

Then at thirteen, Tommy was introduced to drugs by a friend from school. Within a few months, he'd become hard… Cold.

Hell, maybe it wasn't the drugs, Doug thought. Maybe Tommy had just gotten tired of getting his every emotion, his every flaw, thrown in his face. Maybe he decided he just didn't care about Jack anymore.