He watched her demeanor change fractionally as she figured how this game was going to go. Her tears stopped immediately and her back straightened, shoulders pulled back and suddenly she's holding the gun like an old pro.
Rio had halfway expected this though, his boss bitch that got him arrested because he'd insulted her was either going to drop back into that comatose cookie cutter role or step up to the plate, and here she was pissed off and stepping up in all her glory, gun pointed at his chest and not a shred fear in her eyes.
"Gonna kill the king, baby? Make me your first body you drop?" He's taunting her.
Elizabeth's smile is sharp as she checks the magazine to make sure the gun is actually loaded, "not the first."
Suddenly he's smiling, genuinely smiling, because he's guessed that correctly too. She clocks it immediately and rolls her eyes, because of course he'd know that, able to smell it on her somehow. Dean's eyes are bruised and swollen but somehow still widen comically, "what? Who?" He sputters, blood dripping down his face as he coughs wetly.
"Yeah Elizabeth, who?" Rio sits forward chin in his hand expression half mocking and half genuine curiosity. "Who pissed you off enough to kill?"
Elizabeth spares a glance at Dean, gun still pointed with a steady accuracy at Rio's chest before looking back at the man lounging in her dining room without a care in the world.
"Mother never learned how to live without a man, and when daddy walked out the door she tried very quickly to replace him. Enter Robert, my new step daddy, who had a drinking problem and a bad temper." Elizabeth swallowed thickly before continuing. "My mom was in a drunken stupor when she wasn't passed out in a depression fog, so I was the favorite punching bag. Annie was only 7 at the time so Robert threatened if I reported him he'd make sure Annie and I were separated in foster care because our dad obviously didn't want us and our mother was an unfit parent. So I let it happen and kept my mouth shut until I found him one night in Annie's room, watching her sleep while stroking his cock."
Elizabeth swiped at her eyes as she looked back at her audience, Dean looking disgusted and Rio biting down on barely controlled fury but also what may have been pride. It gave her just enough of a push to finish her tale. "The next night I brought him his daily dose of meds and his rum, then waited for him to stumble to bed and pass out before smothering him with a pillow. He was in his sixties on heart medication and the city really didn't give a damn about a drunk in a bad part of town so they listed it as a heart attack and he was buried on the city's dime."
"Who are you?" Dean yelled, jerking up from his chair with arms flailing uselessly. "Jesus Christ, my mother was right, you are no good trash! I'm taking the kids, who knows what shit you'd put them in to get what you want."
The air seemed to thin in the room as Dean tried to shuffle to the door, Rio previously watching his tirade with mirth suddenly looked like he was in a dangerous situation for the first time tonight and the gun wasn't even pointed at him anymore.
"Don't you dare walk out that door." Elizabeth's voice had gone cold, words turning to ice chips as they left her mouth, gun trained on Dean as he slowly turned around. "My children are staying with me."
He found her in a church near her house the next morning, face put together again and that fake plastic smile on her face as she played with the Hem of her sundress.
He sat down next to her in the back watching the people in the front of the church light candles and say their prayers.
"Ruby walks into a church with so much faith in her God that she feels like her life is manageable. Annie uses her words and her body to never truly get close to anyone so she feels bullet proof half the time, claims that sex and love are her ways of worshipping God and feels no need to repent."
"What do you believe in, mama?"
"I believe in myself, because it's never been a God that saved me or protected Annie or provided for my children."
"That mean you don't believe in the devil, either?"
"Oh no, I believe in the devil, I held a gun to his head last night and he made me his business partner."
There's a smirk on his face as she gets up to leave, an old forgotten rosary left next to him where she had been seated, the faded pearls matching the necklace she'd once left as a calling card for him. Business partners indeed.