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Title: i will fight 'til i have died
Characters: Winona Hawkins, Ava Crowder, Raylan Givens
Summary: Part 1
Winona Hawkins returns to Harlan as a US Marshal. Character-swap, ladies-centric AU, inspired by But we are not men by [ profile] moonshine_givens. R, for gore and language.

i will fight 'til i have died - 1

Winona Hawkins shoots Tommy Bucks in the middle of the day, in full view of dozens of witnesses.

It wasn't Tommy commanded her husband to be killed, Tommy was just following orders. Winona knows where the blame lies, but she's not feeling particularly fair. After all, it was Tommy made sure it went down like it did, ended with pieces of Gary’s head all over her front lawn.

No self-respecting member of the US Marshals’ service could let that lie.

She walks up to the table where Tommy is sitting, and she says, in the level way she’d learned growing up, “I gave you twenty-four hours, Tommy.”

He ignores that, tells her to have a seat, starts spouting some bullshit about crabcakes.

There’s a Glock 37 on the table next to his right hand, and she wonders idly if he knows how he’s disrespecting her, thinking she’ll be distracted from her purpose just because there’s a gun barrel pointed at her.

“I’ve still got most of an hour left,” Tommy says, seeing her take a seat and settle her jacket, slightly open so her piece will clear easily.

“And it takes about forty-five minutes to get to the airport,” Winona says. “You’d better be on your way, Tommy.”

“I was telling my friends about you. ‘I’ll give you twenty four hours to get out of Dade county.' They thought it was a joke.” His imitation of her voice is insultingly shrill, and the accent is all wrong. No one ever gets the accent right.

“Seems I get that a lot from men like you, Tommy. I issue an honest warning, and you think I won’t follow through. Why is that? You think decapitating my husband with a stick of dynamite ain’t the kind of offense a woman like me might want to shoot you for?”

“I had an option to kill you too,” Tommy says, harsher than before, Winona sits on the flash of satisfaction at that. “You ought to thank me for not taking it.” He’s leaning forward now, like he thinks he’s going to scare her.

“Well I didn’t shoot you on sight, honey.” She lets her accent drawl, bored with his bluster. “I thought that was thanks enough. You got one more minute.”

He sneers at her, getting angry now, says, “You think you can tell me what to do, scare me off with your itsy-bitsy handgun and your shiny badge? Well you’re wrong, you little cunt. This is my city and I’m not going anywhere.”

“Name calling? Really?” Winona smiles, condescending and steady. “Miami is Gio’s city -- you’re just a third-rate gun thug. And I guess it takes one to know one.”

Winona tilts her head to the side and watches Tommy Bucks realize what she’s called him. She doesn't know what it is about her, makes bad men want to hit her, but she doesn't question it when Tommy lunges across the table, ignoring the gun beside his hand. She throws herself to the side, manages to get out her gun in the same movement, levels it in Tommy Buck's face.

“Give me a reason, you piece of shit,” she says. “Please, give me a reason.”

There’s a long silent moment where they stare at each other, a still moment of tension before the drama. Her on her knees, daring him to try her resolve. Maybe he’ll spit out something like, you don’t have the balls and she’ll say, Try me. Maybe he’ll see the truth of her conviction, and she’ll get to arrest this arrogant son-of-a-bitch instead of putting him down.

Instead, like an answer to her prayers, he goes for the gun. Winona shoots him through the heart.

Ava Crowder shoots her husband at dinnertime on a Monday. She tells anyone who asks that she got tired of Bowman getting drunk and beating on her, and that was why she did it.

No one in Harlan says a word to the contrary.

Title from The Hand That Thieves by Streetlight Manifesto.
First part in a rewrite of the pilot, likely the first fic in a series, we'll see if anyone is interested.
Also available on AO3.


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July 2015

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