latino_menace: (Thinking)


It had taken three attempts to get Bar to open the door to where he wanted to go. Three times he looked out on a truly scummy bar filled with sweaty, running men and the sounds of choppers bearing down in the distance; Hell on the edge of a jungle.

Not where he wants to be right now.

On the fourth attempt - it's warm. Not hot, but pleasantly mild and the view is of a comfortably lived-in sitting room, with child's toys in a corner and overstuffed sofas and armchairs dotted around. The first thing his eyes rest upon is a glass still half full of Scotch; the second a stone block on the table, a sculpture with a woman's face looking out of one side. He pauses for a moment (so long since all that), then wanders in and puts his bag down, goes to the French windows to look over the garden that ends in beach and then, nothing but sea. Three thousand miles of sea standing between him and home.

But it's alright. It's nice to see the place again. He'd had mixed feelings the night before, wondering if it would be unpleasantly strange to have Fiona here. But it's not. He wants her to see it. For some reason, letting her see the places he lives is like letting her see himself. It's not even about showing off, this time. The house is not small but still modest by his standards. And it was a real home, for a while. Maybe he wants her to know that he can live normally, sometimes.

'Want a tour or do you want to head straight off? I just need to make a couple of calls before we go.'
latino_menace: (Random - Get Used To Them)


'Ramon? Baby? It's been a month for me.'

'Excellent.'

A hand extends from the card and Ramon grasps it gladly, laughs when he finds his arms suddenly full of blonde.

'Missed you.'

'You too.'

+ + +

A couple of hours later, Random is sitting up in bed and tutting. Ramon thinks it's very unfair that he should be doing this so pointedly, especially as he was just dozing off nicely there.

'What have you been doing with the place? It's a mess.'

'The cleaning company'll take care of it. I still have them come once a week.'

'You didn't answer my question.'

It's been a long time since he's been able to get anything past Random.

'Just came to blow off some steam.'

'...why? Are you about to do something...you?'

'I could take offence at that, you know.'

'You could. But you won't. I didn't say I minded.'

Ramon thinks that of course Random doesn't mind anymore because he's not around to deal with the consequences.

'Someone pissed me off.'

'Everyone pisses you off, baby.'

'More than usual.' He sighs and lights a cigarette...then another one, five seconds later. Random will never not be a thief. 'She knew about me and you and she threw it in my face.'

'Oh.'

Random knows very well how that sort of thing usually goes down. He's never been able to get it through Ramon's head that just laughing about it or throwing innuendo right back usually works a lot better. He's a lot better at games than Ramon'll ever be. Patience born of being an immortal prince with a psychotic father.

'She must be stupid.'

'No. Arrogant. Likes to play games.'

'Sounds like the type you normally fight with. Are you going to kill her?'

'...no.'

Probably.

'...ah.' Random knows what that means. If he doesn't want to kill people who piss him off, he's fucking them. 'Promise me you'll...you know.'

His eyes are green and worried and Ramon immediately throws his cigarette away and kisses him.

'No need to worry. You know I have no patience. She'll either learn or she won't.'

And that's what it comes down to. He puts it out of his head and focuses on what he's doing, which is reassure the only really important person in his life, the best way he knows how.
latino_menace: (Businessman)


Random had left him in Portugal. He was expected it to be horrible but it wasn't really. Only a month to go and he's just done almost a year and a half without him, so that seems like nothing.

Besides, he's knackered. Next time, he's bringing Viagra. They'll both need it by the third day.

That aside, there's business to take care of. Lisbon is warm and busy with early season tourists. He avoids crowded areas as much as possible and for once in his life, tries to avoid attention. The back street he's heading for makes that easy enough, though he pauses before entering the filthy laundromat to see if he can spot anyone watching. No. But in this day and age, that doesn't mean much.

'Take me to Juam,' he says to the first person he sees who isn't actively engaged in laundry, and they nod. He wonders if that means he's known to regular staff here - that would be bad - or maybe it's just that anyone who knows the boss's name gets automatic access.

The guy is in a back office and it's much cleaner in here. Quieter too.

'Ramon. What do you need?'

He's never told this one his last name. He wont need him when he's back home.

'What do you know about working with silver, Juam?'

The guy blinks, then smiles and it's on.

* * *

Spending a week here is no hardship. There are things to be taken care of - namely, he's trying to decide whether to keep the house or not. In the end, he decides he might as well. It could still be useful and as it's definitely not known to the American authorities, its probably worth hanging on to.

He finally gets the chance to get rid of the fucking statue that still sits in the living room. He looks at it and wonders how it ever made him go so crazy. He's glad to see the back of it nevertheless.

Random's orange sports car goes into storage but not before he takes it for a long drive down the coast. Seems a shame to put it away but he's not selling it. So it'll sleep until its needed.

Cleaners, removal men, details with the security firm that'll watch it. Details details details. They have to be taken care of because he wont be back very often. He can go home now, he doesn't need this place. So he does it and time passes and then a week has gone.

'Got them?'

Six shiny rounds, tipped with silver. He pays a thousand for them, cash. Jason will never know that.

'See you around, Juam.'

When the door opens to the bar, he doesn't look back though he doubts he'll be spending time there again. Another chapter of their past lives over but he's not one to dwell and anyway, the future is now as secure as it ever was.
latino_menace: (Stone Cold)

He wakes to the sound of screaming. For a hazy moment, he wonders if he's still in that room and the woman has found her voice at last, whether his hand has slipped and she's found the air to make herself be known one time in her life, before it ends.

No. There's sun on his face and the woman is as invisible as she ever was. The noise is Martin, and he sighs as he crawls to a sitting position on the couch. It takes a moment before he can stand, the world lurching and swaying under his feet as he heads to the nursery.

The little boy is hungry. And distressed, if the fist in his mouth is anything to go by. He needs out and Ramon grimaces at the noise, trying not to throw up at the wafting smell off his jacket, (crack on his clothes, smoke in his hair, sex on his skin), trying to shush him because the racket is hurting his head. Martin calms a little when he sees him and gets picked up, and Ramon doesn't object when the child wraps arms round his neck to be taken to the kitchen, even though he's contaminating him with the blood on his hands.

It would be strange to an onlooker, he thinks. A toddler in a high chair, making a mess of porridge and banana, while a man smokes and waits for coffee to finish going through the machine. Maybe there'd be nothing odd about it normally. But today, he feels his shirt sticking to him and he knows why. Knows he's decorated with something that incriminates him in every way its possible to be accused. Betrayal, drugs, murder. Sin. That's what blood means. Blood and sex.

...empty, uncaring, unremorseful. Hurt. Alone. That's what anger means.

Martin is carried to the bedroom and given a toy to play with on the floor while he goes to shower. The boy's alright now. Smiling at his stuffed cat and talking to it in some incomprehensible childish language that no one ever remembers. Pai is paying him some attention. He likes that. And he's fed and has a toy. If daddy were here, life would be perfect.

Pai is standing in the shower, washing away pink water and the memories of last night. The ones that are willing to leave, anyway. The ones that involved the laughing sculpture, the imaginings of Random and his woman and what they're doing, whether it's nearly over yet. They can go, he's done with them. Because he'd believed Random when he'd said he'd come back. He will. But neither of them knew when that would be and it's not safe here now. He's fallen, here. It's time to move on in case it happens again.

The stained suit is burnt and with it, all evidence. Martin's clothes too, and the boy is bathed. A few things are packed up because some things have to travel everywhere with them. He looks around the house meticulously, to check that he's left nothing behind, left no trail. Automatic pilot, unthinking.

The last thing his eyes fall on, as he opens the door to the bar with a bag on his back and a kid in his arms, is the box containing the woman. He can't see the front, where it's open. But he knows anyway, that she's still laughing. Still protected in (his arms) her wrappings, still happy and reaching for her lover.

("She's beautiful")

He smiles without humour and Ramon leaves the house, headed for Haven where they'll be alone and he can't fall again. Where he'll wait until Random finds him - and the woman won't be smiling then. He'll come back here, break that box open and sledgehammer that grin right off her face.
latino_menace: (Shadow)

Up or down today?

He doesn't drink while Martin's awake. Drugs are different though, some of them actually stimulate the brain so he doesn't worry about taking them when the kid's around. The possibility of error in judgement is, of course, ignored.

It was a long night last night. Oblivion didn't come early and the run up to it was hard. The only casualties in the end were the empty bottle and the glass though, thrown against the far wall when he was silently raging against...everything. It's the only word to describe it now because the specific thing that's making him see red is just too painful to think about. So it gets focused on everything else. Ramon's not objective enough to figure out the potential downside of this.

Up might be good. Won't be tired. Get some work done.

...up makes you think. Can't help it, your mind speeds up. Needs something to do.


He's thought once or twice about returning to Haven. He told Random he might. But he's stuck in two minds over that - on one hand, Random might come here first and he wouldn't want to not be home when he gets back. Doesn't want him wandering through Shadows for any longer than he has to, even if it only takes another half hour.

On the other hand, he could not be a pussy and go wherever the fuck he wants and make Random look for him. What's another few minutes? Another day? Fuck, why not just go on vacation before coming back, Random?

Same hand - Haven's quiet. Less stimulation, a place that's calmer.

Other hand - Haven's quiet. Less stimulation, a place that's calmer. The house in Portugal might be on the beach in a small town but Lisbon's not far away. And there are bars. Things to do with the kid. Bars. People to take frustration out on when things get out of control. Bars.

Plans for today? None. Kid's gone out with the sitter for something. Nothing to do but can't drink yet, he'll be back. Fuck.

If he were honest with himself, he'd know that he wants to go to Haven because it's theirs. Their things are back in place since Arithon and Bianca left, everything's as it was. And full of memories of the two of them, just them, no one else. Even before Martin, it was a world just for two.

And if he were honest with himself, he'd also know that this is the exact reason he's balking at the prospect of being there. The idea of sitting in the quiet with no distractions doesn't make him feel anything good right now. But as he stands in the basement and stares at the array of drugs in front of him, trying to choose - it still doesn't take him that long to decide. Up means buzzing and distractions and bravado. But he doesn't reach that way. Not today. Today's a day for...sitting in the quiet with no distractions. Which is why he picks up the barbiturates instead of the powder, counting out a large dose and swallowing them dry.

Some days you're down, and you just want to stay there.
latino_menace: (Drug Lord)

Being close to death has an advantage or two, which a lot of people don't realise. But it's an undeniable fact that the day after the experience, everything's amazing. You look around and really feel the sun on your face, you notice the blue of the sea and the tang of ocean salt in your nose. Food tastes great when you almost never got to eat it again and every drink slides down with a proper appreciation of the time it took to make, the years it spent fermenting in barrels or bottles. Ramon drinks champagne for three days because if you want to live life well, you may as well have the best.

He spends the day after with Martin, looking after him properly for perhaps the first time, really engaging with him instead of treating him as some sort of vague annoyance to be barely tolerated. And the difference is obvious to him in this relieved state; he can see the boy respond, becoming more confident, smiling easier and relaxing a little more in his presence. Ramon takes every opportunity to look at the green eyes and silently tell Random that it's going to be OK, he's still here, he'll be around when he gets back. For three days, life is good again.

And then...well, he's been here before. Eventually life inflicts itself again, the bright new edge dims, things start to recede back to the familiar and mundane. He swaps champagne for liquor and it tastes the same as it ever did, he finds food and fresh air as boring as it usually is. Such is life.

With it, of course, returns the now-familiar ache of missing Random. No matter how good life was for a few days there, he's still got no one here to share it with. The other side of the bed is just as empty and Random's still out there somewhere, spending nights in a woman's bed, smiling at her (calling her 'lover'? Holding her just because he wants to be close? Pulling her upstairs with that devilish grin?) and trying to make a baby with her. Nothing has changed, really.

The collapse, when it comes, is bad. Martin's too young to know that this recent upturn of events is a house of cards built on quicksand, so he's unprepared for the moment when he runs in from the garden on his sturdy little legs, laughing and happy, trailing dirt across the kitchen. Ramon took one look at it and snapped, yelling at him to 'shut up and get out!', making the boy whimper in shock and fear and run right back out again, trying not to cry.

He doesn't feel guilty about things, it's not in his nature. He's unremorseful and cold again, because it's suddenly never been more clear that there can be all the good food and wine in the world, but they don't make life interesting. Never have. His idea of a good time is being successful and Random being here to share it with him - not his son, who's a poor substitute. Not the growing business in Texorami, still in its early stages, because it can never compare to his original empire in South America. He's forced to look in the mirror and ask, What have I got? I'm alive, but so what? What's so great about appreciating the fucking sun when I'm just another guy at the moment, living in a house with a kid on his own. What happened to what I was? I had control, power, respect, fear. Hundreds of people that did what I said, scared of the consequences if they didn't. I made more money in a day than some people make in a year - what the hell am I doing here?

He's doing this because it's what Random wants. And he'll keep doing it, because it's what Random wants. Except...Random isn't here.

Martin had come back in when he'd been told to, subdued once more. Fed, bathed and put to bed in silence. And then Ramon goes back to staring out of the window at the trees bending in the garden, bent by a wind coming in off the Atlantic. Is this how's he's supposed to spent this new chance of life he's been given? Stand around like a fucking housewife, waiting for someone to come home. He can't do that.

No, not can't. Won't.

The bottle is hit hard that night, making up for the last three days of sobriety. But it's still not enough because he gets drunk when Random's here all the time, that's allowed. So fuck that.

He sways a little as he walks down to the basement, pulling keys from his pocket. The shit is locked up for the benefit of the health of the Amberites, who can't touch it - which is why he doesn't, when Random's home. Well, he's not restricted by that now. So he feels no guilt when he walks back upstairs with a well wrapped package, cutting into it easily and letting a mound of small white crystals pour out onto the coffee table. Like ice chips, only not. And he's smiling as he starts crushing them with a credit card, then chopping them with a razor; practiced hands working without direction,

(clink clink clink)

cutting the stuff fine and rolling a hundred Euro note because it makes the best straw. No guilt at all. It's not like there's anyone here to stop him.
latino_menace: (Attention. You have mine. For now)

From here...

Ramon feels just a little light-headed as he opens the door to the house in Portugal. Probably just his body getting used to having blood again after losing a few pints. Or maybe it's just shock...but it doesn't matter, because the only thing he wants now is a drink, regardless of whether he should or not.

And one other thing. There's something he needs to see, though he'll never admit it. It can wait a few minutes anyway because he needs to get the blood off his hands first...and he's pretty sure that Mary Anne wouldn't mind a drink either.

'Still like tequila?'

OOM: Nights

Jul. 2nd, 2006 11:29 pm
latino_menace: (Absolut Bogota)

Nights are the worst. He snorts to himself for being such a walking cliche about this, but they really are. No distractions and a silent house and nothing but time to wonder what they're doing. Is she touching him right now? What's the time difference - are they in bed as well? What are they talking about? Do his little quirks amuse her, does he try and make her laugh? His hand curls into a fist when he thinks about it and won't unclench.

It's summer and it's hot and he blames that for the reason he can't sleep. A convenient excuse but he makes himself believe it. After an hour or two though, he gives in, throws some clothes on and heads downstairs. The bar is the most logical place to go now, because at least there there are people. Maybe later. He sits in an armchair instead, and starts drinking. It's methodical, no hesitation or thought or care. Just glass after glass until the edge is gone and the questions dampened, melted into the anger that he lives with these days. What does it matter if she laughs at his jokes? And she's going to have to touch him, of course, to get pregnant. So what? Get over it. It's fine. He's coming back.

Over a week now. As he gets up to fetch another pack of cigarettes, Ramon tells himself to stop counting. Nothing good lies down that road. He'll drive himself crazy (and he knows it). For now, the only thing to do is wait.
latino_menace: (Chill)

Try and be a parent, Random had said. It's another thing that makes Ramon want to hit something, because Random knew very well that he wasn't going to refuse him anything just before he walked out of the door.

So he's taken him down to the beach. It's morning and warm and the kid always seems to like it when it's like this. So, that's what they're doing.
latino_menace: (Cigar - Musing)

He's well used to sitting at home and waiting for news on how business has gone. It's been that way for a long time. This is different though, because this is Random out there and getting his hands dirty and while he knows that the man is good, it's still a worry.

So he's sitting at the kitchen table with a bottle of Scotch and impatient fingers tapping on the tabletop. He knows Mal did her bit and is fine. But what of Random?

OOM: Worry

Jun. 5th, 2006 10:13 pm
latino_menace: (Couple - You)

He'd spent a good hour just holding Random and watching him sleep, silently worrying that knowing about Gorlim was going to make him do something mad, like attack Ruin. Or Mary Anne, or both. He also knows that he's not really in any position to ask him not to, given his own recent - and past - activities.

Thoughts had been interrupted by Martin crying, so he'd disentangled himself gently to go and change him and give him some food. And now he's back, bringing water and fresh fruit so that it'll be there when Random wakes up. While he's waiting for that, he just crawls back into bed with him and pulls him carefully back into his arms. Because there's almost nothing he likes better than simply watching his lover while he rests.
latino_menace: (Chill)

It's late. And it's hot. Ramon had waited up for as long as he could but the heat would make anyone sleepy and he'd eventually given in. Besides, with the time difference, Random probably wouldn't be back for ages yet.

So Ramon goes to sleep without giving it a second thought, windows open to let some air into the stuffy room.

OOM: Awake

May. 31st, 2006 06:05 pm
latino_menace: (Split Lip)

It's one of what my people refer to as the Unforgiveable Curses. The Cruciatus. No injuries, no wounds, just pain.

She was right. That's all it gave him, just pain. And for that, he's grateful. Pain can be dealt with, and forgotten - especially by someone like him. Someone who doesn't dwell on things like that because they'll never be afraid of physical abuse. He's taken a lot of hits in his life but as long as he gives more in return, he's OK with it. It's part of who he is. And he likes who he is. The Cruciatus curse isn't why he's awake right now.

Imperio! Now, just tell me who Random is and tell Mr. Bauer what you did to his granddaughter, and it will be over.

He doesn't know what the hell Imperio means, she hadn't explained it. He's going to find out, but that's not the point. He'd resisted most of it. Said enough, but not everything. So Bauer knew he'd taken Angela - big deal. He'd known that when it had happened, pretty much. And Ramon will take a beating over cell time any day of the week.

How long do you think you could last against that compulsion if I put it on you again and left it?

He'd resisted as much as he could. Told her Random's name, though she could have found that out from anyone. That's not the point. Sort of confessed to what he'd done to Angela - said enough anyway. But he hadn't talked about Random; and in the end, it didn't matter. Because she knew about him and

Even kill people they love...

she'd threatened him and this is the first time that anything he's done could actually lose him his lover. Even after the thing with Arithon, no one had had anything against Random apart from questioning his choice in partners. But this

If you ever even look at my family again in a manner that displeases me, your Random won't know what hit him. And it might not even be you. After all, I have a whole bar full of people to choose from.

is something else, and he can't bear the thought that Random might no longer be safe. Because how can either of them look out for any random stranger in a bar that might want to kill him? It's impossible.

And this is why Ramon is downstairs tonight, lying on the sofa in darkness and not wanting to go to bed. Because he hasn't told Random yet and doesn't even know where to begin.
latino_menace: (Turn Away)

It's a little easier to breathe now and the minor things are healing up nicely. He's lowered his doseage of pills and everything seems to be going along well.

He wishes he could say the same about he and Random. There hasn't seemed to be anything overtly wrong since that last talk about it they'd had - but it's all the worse for that. Things are awkward and they never usually are. There's distance, and Random's quiet and they're not talking like they usually do.

Ramon hates it. He doesn't like feeling uncomfortable with him but he does. He has the impression that he's supposed to do or say something to make it better, but he has no idea what.

So he does what he usually does in these situations. He waits until they go to bed that night and pulls Random close, starts stroking through his hair.

'You OK, baby?'
latino_menace: (Hide/Sleep)

He has no idea how long he slept for. or what time it is. He just knows that it's hot, he immediately wants a shower and there's a considerable amount of pain if he so much as breathes, let alone moves.

That's OK though, he can handle that. There are ways of coping with that. But the conversation with Random last night comes flooding back and that's a whole other story. He has no idea what caused that reaction, or how to make it better but knows that he can only do it by talking to him.

He doesn't appear to be in the bed though, and that's not a good sign.
latino_menace: (Fighting Bleed)

This hurts more than he wants to admit. More than he will admit - and it's for this reason that he considers not going home at all for a day or two. Let the worst of the swelling go down, hope that it would stop hurting to breathe, clean up the cuts opened by Jack's fists.

Wait for his hands to stop shaking because of what the witch had done.

But that's not fair to Random - two days in the bar is almost a week in Portugal. And besides, he doesn't want him finding out from anyone else.

So he eases his way back through the door that has obligingly opened to their home, hoping to get upstairs to the bathroom before Random sees him.
latino_menace: (Half face)

Ramon had written the note before he'd headed to the club for the day. Now he's back and is rather surprised to not see Random on the beach or in the garden, because that's where he usually tends to be.

'Random?'
latino_menace: (Chill)

It's been a normal day, nothing out of the ordinary. He'd done a few hours at the club this morning, then left through the bar so that time didn't run on and Trumped back to Portugal. Lunch with Random and then Random'd gone to the bar, which he doesn't do that often, these days. So Ramon hadn't objected being left to babysit. Just spent the afternoon with paperwork, ate leftovers for dinner and put Martin to bed about seven.

Now? There's a football match on TV and he's vegging in front of the game with a beer. Quite bored really and wanting Random back, but putting up with it. He's almost on the verge of dozing off actually.
latino_menace: (Shadow)

Ramon opens the door quietly, not wanting to draw attention, and it's closed quickly behind him so that the noise of he bar doesn't filter through. He takes a moment to just lean against the wall, rubbing over his face with a bruised and bloodied hand, trying to calm down before seeing Random again. A cigarette is lit and after a few minutes, he walks quietly towards the dark kitchen to find a bottle of something strongly alcoholic. This evening is one he'd like to forget in a hurry.

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Ramon Salazar

September 2010

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