I won't lie, this is going much faster than I'm used to, and I'm sorry about the quality. It's not the worst, but it's certainly not my best. If you'd like to yell at me about it, or tell me anything else, please review.


Chapter One: Barrel

The next time Richard Harrow saw Alex Roux he was staring at a wall and had his gun pressed to the back of his head.

"This is really unfortunate, Handsome," he said.

Shifting his feet and stretching his fingers across the handle of his gun, Richard twitched his lips under the mask and swallowed. He could hear Jimmy outside, talking on to one of the guys who'd smuggled in the whiskey, and he opened his mouth to shout.

"One word and you'll be staring at your brain," Roux whispered.

Richard shut his mouth, accidentally biting his cheek.

"Why are you betraying." Richard shut his mouth and swallowed, but Roux laughed before he could continue.

"I'm not betraying anyone. Jimmy paid me to kill Manny, I killed Manny, and now I don't work for you guys anymore. I work for who's paying me."

The gun barrel slid across his ear and tapped his metal cheek. Roux stared up at him in the dim light, his high cheekbones making the shadows on his face standout even more. Richard tapped his heels against the floor. Roux cocked his head to the side and tapped Richard's mask with the gun. His collar fell open, his threadbare jacket and shirt barely enough for winter, and Richard stared at Roux's collarbone.

Bless Angela's cooking.

He glanced back up at Roux, who was staring into his good eye with one eyebrow raised.

"You ever going to explain why you've got dog bites all over your face?"

'It's not my face,' Richard thinks. Aloud he says, "Aren't you supposed…to be shooting me?"

"I could if you're getting bored, but I'd really prefer not to."

Richard swung his arm around just as Roux closed his mouth, and Roux crashed against the wall, the back of his head leaving a dark smear of blood across the boards.

"Fuck, Harrow, the hell was that for?"

And Roux looked up into the barrel of Richard's gun.

"Really, Handsome?" he smirked.

"Why do you. Call me." Richard had to swallow the word 'handsome'. "That?"

Roux winked at the barrel of his gun.

"Secrets," he muttered, and Roux dropped to the ground.

Harrow felt his feet leave the floor, and suddenly Roux was on top of him, his hands around Richard's wrist. Roux smashed Richard's hand against the ground, the gun went flying off into the corner, and Richard's mask cut into his skin. Roux had tackled him halfway across the barn.

He felt her leg fall to the side of his, and Richard rammed his knee between Roux's thighs, expecting Roux to crumble to the side. Roux grimaced, rolling his eyes, and Richard felt his mouth open.

"That sort a hurt, Handsome."

"You're a." Richard licked his lips. "Woman?"

And he was suddenly and awkwardly aware of where his knee was.

"You're not."

Richard had had enough pain for a lifetime, and he glared up at Roux who mock pouted and smiled.

He…she picked up her gun and walked towards the back door. Jimmy was trying to bust down the main doors to the barn, but the lock across it held. She stopped in the doorway and waved at Richard, who'd managed to get up onto one knee.

"I was only supposed to delay you and grab the whiskey, but I'll leave the liquor if you keep your mouth shut."

Richard nodded, unable to get his scarred throat to let any air out.

"See you later," she said, and Richard heard the door shut. Through the old wood he heard her shout, "Handsome" as she ran off.

He tried to frown, stumbled back to the ground, and only managed to stand just as Jimmy came crashing through the door.

"The hell, Richard."