Mia studies when she can't sleep, because she likes to be productive and she refuses to do other peoples' chores. It's not really working right now. There's too much worry distracting her. Her family is out on another dumbass heist and she's stuck in the house.
She isn't really stuck. At any moment, she could grab her keys and take off. But being elsewhere won't make her feel better, and there aren't any decent places open at two in the morning. It's just as she is working herself into a sulk that there's a knock at the door. Well, more pounding
than knocking. At the back door.
Considering she is an intelligent woman currently alone in the house after dark, and that the people who live with her wouldn't bother knocking, she grabs the metal baseball bat before she answers the door. On the one hand, she doesn't need the bat. On the other hand, clearly she should have remembered all the people she knows are idiots because Cat is currently supporting most of Brian's weight as he bleeds all over her back step.
"Hey, I know it's late, sorry about that," Cat smiles, "would you be able to patch him up a bit, and keep an eye on him while I take care of a few things?"
She sounds so reasonable, like someone dropping their pet off while they go run errands. Mia is still blinking at her when she breezes into the house like she isn't basically dragging a full-grown man. After another moment of staring, Mia closes the door and locks it. And puts the bat down.
"What the hell?"
"My meeting with some of the locals got a bit heated. It was handled, and I'm going to make sure there aren't any repeated incidents."
Mia wants to punch her in the face for being so calm. Instead, she brings the first aid kit out from under the kitchen sink and sets everything up on the table.
Brian is conscious but seems only mostly aware. He flinches when Mia shines a flashlight in his eyes and he's definitely concussed. The injury on his leg is a more urgent problem. It was sloppily tied off with what was probably one of Cat's shawls, that is now soaked through. Mia wants to criticize the bandaging job but 1) Cat tied it pretty well for someone working one-handed, 2) she isn't an asshole, and 3) she finally gets a look at the wound.
It's more of a gouge than a hole, but Mia can guess what caused it. Wounds don't look too different in person than in pictures, and she can recognize a gunshot wound when she sees one.
Thankfully, there isn't anything (bullet or otherwise) in the wound.
"Do I want to know what 'locals' you were dealing with that got him shot?"
Cat hums in thought, "Probably better that you don't. More plausible deniability when I make them all disappear."
Mia looks up from cutting open Brian's jeans around the injury, "I didn't need to know that."
"You really didn't, but it makes me feel good to say it."
It kind of makes Mia feel better to hear it, not that she's going to admit that anytime soon.
Instead, Mia tells Cat to make herself useful and do something about Brian's head injury. Cat's smug expression tells Mia that she caught on anyway, but she does as asked. They go quiet until she has to clean out the wound (with real antiseptic, not vodka like an action hero trying to die of infection) and Brian lets out this rattling gasp that just about breaks Mia's heart. He needs stitches, which Mia technically isn't qualified for; not that it stops her.
Cat has thankfully found the icepacks and towels and is helping Brian ice the lump on the back of his head.
By the time she's got Brian stitched and bandaged, he's shaking and gasping, semi-conscious and eyes wet. It's a bit of a dance, hauling him upright with Cat on one side and Mia on the other then shuffling through the house into the living room. There was no way to get him up the stairs, so the couch it is. She makes him drink some water – basically force feeding him some painkillers – and bundling him into blankets.
"Well, I've got to arrange a meeting." Cat doesn't really smile so much as bare her teeth. "Tell him I need him to lie low here for a while and not to worry about me. I'm going talk to my brother." Then she saunters out of the house.
Mia does not punch the wall (in the absence of Cat's face). She's got to clean blood out of her kitchen.
Leon has never been a leader or the type to take center stage. It's never bothered him to remain in the background and watch things happen. People often forget about him, and he takes pride in it. It served him well growing up, especially when his mom married Jesse's dad. Now, Leon is the type of guy who gets things done and doesn't need any credit. Generally, he's so easygoing people don't even remember he's got a mind of his own.
There are very few people who have looked at him instead of through him.
When he and Jesse had looked at each other, their parents screaming at each other in the background, and had understood they were all each other could rely on.
When the owner of the local mechanic shop had handed Jesse a wrench, looked Leon in the eye, and said, "Your brother is a genius." The first person to look past Jesse's failing grades and absence record. His warm, sharp eyes had seen into Leon's soul and in turn Leon had known this man would look after his little brother.
After he graduated, he'd kept going to the shop. Even on those rare occasions Jesse actually went to class. Then he met the owner's son, back from college, the young man had looked into him (with those same sharp, warm eyes) and said it was nice to meet his dad's latest assistants.
Late one night, when Leon had turned up on the Torrettos' doorstep with a black eye and Jesse tucked into his side, he and Vince had come to an understanding. Without a word, the older boy had helped get Jesse settled in the guest room, then had parked Leon on the couch before going back upstairs to sleep on Dom's floor.
He's never quite had a moment like that with Mia or Letty. To Mia, Leon was just another of Dom's friends. Letty tended to see the rest of their group as extensions of Dom. Leon would still die for either of them, but they'd never seen the core of him. It was a relief. Being known was the most terrifying thing he had ever felt.
He'd had that feeling with Cat the moment he met her. She'd looked him in the eye and it was like she could read everything he'd ever felt. Leon knew what she was then. She's like Dom. Not quite a force of nature, but not quite just a person either. They owned their people – body and soul – and so long as they took care of them, those people would follow them through anything. Leon knew in an instant this woman could ask him to do anything short of betraying Dom and he'd do it.
Sitting at the Sunday barbeque, he and Brian had looked away from their respective leaders long enough to lock eyes. An understanding had passed between them. They were two people born in the wrong era. They belonged in Arthur's court; knights swearing their lives to the banner of their chosen lords. Not nearly so chivalrous as people seemed to think. A whole lot bloodier.
Leon doesn't have much of an opinion about the whole truck heist business. They needed the money at first, but it really isn't about that anymore. Jesse loves it, and some days it seems like it's the only thing pulling Dom out of his head, so that's good enough for Leon. Everyone is always high on victory and adrenaline when they finish one, and they come home jittery and ready to celebrate.
Mia has the kitchen light on, so she's still awake and they can be a bit loud. Not too loud though, 'cause she's probably studying. Except there's something on the porch. The others are taking forever to get the back door open and so he sees something dark and wet on the steps. It's smears, like partial footprints. Multiple sets of footprints too, or someone pacing an awful lot.
Really odd, given Mia just about screamed herself hoarse the last time someone tracked grease into her kitchen. And the more he looks at it, the less it looks like grease.
On the way in, he can see it on the door too. Like someone was kicking at it. He's getting kinda worried now, but he just heard Mia in the hallway telling them to "stay the heck out of the living room 'cause she just cleaned in there and Brian is sleeping over." It's not the first time Brian has crashed on their couch, but Leon has a bad feeling anyway.
There aren't any footprints inside, but the first aid kit is on the table, stuff bunched up but not organized and put away yet. The others don't seem to notice it or think it's odd. Mia reorganizes it every other time they "do something stupid." With a sinking suspicion, Leon checks the trash and finds bloody gauze and something that must have been used as a makeshift bandage.
It's one of Cat's scarf-things.
Brian's car wasn't here, so Cat must have dropped him off. She's probably fine then. And Mia isn't freaking out, so Brian is going to be okay.
The others are still talking over each other to recount the heist. It had gone perfectly and they were several drinks into their celebration.
Leon heads back outside, waving his pack of cigarettes in explanation. Dom nods in acknowledgement, a lord dismissing his knight from the court. Once he gets out there, he does light up, but he also grabs some rags and cleaning solution from the shed. He's halfway through his second by the time he's done.
It's the best he can do in the dark, but he's confident the blood trail is gone. He's putting the cleaning supplies away when Mia comes out. The way she's staring at the door and ground, it's obvious what she's here to do.
"Don't worry about it. I got it cleaned up. Brian okay?"
Mia looks up at him with the same sharp, warm eyes as her father and brother. Leon kinda hates it, but not nearly as much as he loves it. It's terrifying to have someone recognize you for what you are, but such a relief to have another person know you. It's like she's seeing him for the first time.
"Blood loss and a concussion. We'll be looking after him for a few days."
He lends her a cigarette and his lighter, and they sit silently for a while.