Why Me?

Ty, just another skateboarding high school junior, was minding her own legal business when she gets stuck in the middle of a mafia fight with guns, knives, and potato launchers, while only armed with her trusty skateboard. What does she do? Runs for her life only to get captured and asked (read: commanded) to marry one of the three sons of the don. And then people want to kill her. Obviously.

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22. Chapter Twenty-Two

"Buongiorno, bambina," Lorenzo greeted when Ty hesitantly stepped into the kitchen. "Have a seat, I'll get you something to eat. How did you sleep?"

"Uhh, alright, I guess," she lied, drifting to the counter where she had sat with Luca just hours before. She warily eyed the others in the kitchen, four other men who were a part of Roberto's group but none of whom were familiar to her.

They all gave her a simple "Good morning" and Ty nodded at them, still quite on edge, especially with her lack of sleep. She was grateful that she had decided to put on Jimmy's hoodie and Grant's shorts back on before she came downstairs.

"Are those…crêpes?" Ty asked them, noticing what they were eating. Each had a plate piled with various foods such as bacon, sausages, waffles, and of course, the crêpes. At that moment, Ty's stomach rumbled loudly, causing chuckles to float around the kitchen.

"Shut up, dickwads," Ty grumbled.

Lorenzo set a plate similar to the others' down in front of her and ruffled her bed hair, "What do you want with it?"

"You have strawberry jam and Nutella?" Ty asked with wide, hopeful eyes.

"Over here," one of the men answered, lifting up the tub of Nutella while another slid the jar of jam over to her.

"Thanks." Ty didn't really know what to make of the current situation. There she was, in a kitchen with five men who were part of a mafia, eating crêpes.

The four brought their dishes over to the sink and waved to Lorenzo and Ty, the one who had passed her the jam nodded, "Have a nice day, Ms. Jackson."

"Uhh, you guys too?" Ty tried, not sure what else to say.

When they left and Ty was alone with Lorenzo she sighed, "This is so weird."

Lorenzo smiled sympathetically and sat down beside her, "It's… not quite normal, yes, but you will get used to it eventually. Even the other men find the situation a little weird, but the ones that live in the house are loyal to the bone to Roberto. They will all protect you."

Ty sighed and forked a piece of bacon, "Whatever you say, Chucky." A moment later she was shoveling the food into her mouth, speaking between mouthfuls, 'Jesus, how are you such a good cook! This shit is amazing!"

"Grazie, bambina," Lorenzo grinned. "Do you want anything to drink?"

"Water's fine, thanks."

When Ty finished her breakfast, she asked about where everyone else was, and with perfect timing, Carlos strolled in wearing only a pair of dark blue cotton pajama pants.

"Ty, good morning. How'd you sleep?" he asked even though he already knew the answer.

"Fine," Ty lied again. She knew that the two could probably tell she wasn't being truthful, but neither had pressed her on it yet so she let it be.

"The dishes are all for you, Carlos. See you later, bambina. If you need anything, just ask anyone around the house."

With that, Lorenzo left the kitchen and Carlos took Ty's finished plate, ignoring her protests by saying, "I'm on dish duty today."

"Was the room alright?" Carlos asked, turning on the tap and grabbing one of the plates.

Ty got up from her seat and stood next to Carlos, picking up a plate as well, "Yeah, it was fine. And I need something to do, so don't tell me to go away."

Carlos chuckled, "Alright, dolcezza. How about I rinse you wipe and we can switch later?"

Ty nodded and the two fell into a companionable silence as they worked. After a while when they were about to switch jobs, Carlos said, "If you ever need anything in the night, remember that I'm right next door."

Ty blinked in surprise at the suddenness of the statement and simply nodded, "Yeah, I know."

"I mean it, Ty. You can't bottle everything up and I know you're not going to be telling your friends much. Fred was worried about you after you talked to them last night."

Ty forced a smirk and bumped her shoulder into Carlos' arm, "You and Red having midnight phone sex already?"

"Don't change the subject, Ty. People are worried about you."

"Well no one asked them to be!"

The dishes were forgotten by then. Ty and Carlos were facing each other, Ty glaring and Carlos just frustrated with worry.

"I never asked for any of this to happen, Rizzo, and I will use what little power over this fucking situation I have to make sure nothing happens to my friends. As much as I want for Fred to be happy, if being with you causes him any harm, I will do all I can to make sure you and your family don't go fucking up his life like you're doing to mine."

"You can't keep pushing people away, Ty. We're here because we care for you. We want you to be safe," Carlos tried to reason.

"Well I'd be a whole lot safer if I hadn't met you lot," Ty said. "Just…leave me alone."

Carlos tried to get Ty to stay, but she managed to slip away and walk through the dining room and into the main hallway. She sped through the hallways and walked right out the door into the front yard of the mansion. She wasn't going to leave the estate quite yet, she just wanted to get out of the house and find somewhere where she could cool down.

Ty managed to find an area of solace behind the garage in a little corner of well-kept grass with the outer walls of the mansion providing adequate shade.

She leaned her head back into the wall and closed her eyes. Goddammit.

X

"Just give her a little more time, Carlos."

Carlos swung around and saw his father enter the kitchen.

Roberto had caught the end of Ty and Carlos' little argument. He knew that all the changes and events would put a lot of pressure and stress on Ty, but he hoped that she would be more accepting of help. He knew Ty preferred to handle things herself and not let anyone, even her friends, worry over her or provide help that she thought she didn't need. She was independent to an almost self-destructive level.

Carlos sighed and massaged his forehead, "I know, Papà, but I'm worried. She refuses help like a vegan refuses steak."

Roberto nodded, ", but you have to remember that she's been taking care of herself for years. She doesn't trust people easily and she clearly doesn't like people getting too involved in her problems."

Carlos nodded but he still wanted to help her. It was technically his and his family's fault for what was happening but he liked Ty. She was interesting and he already thought of her like a younger sister which only made him want to protect her even more.

Roberto went up to Carlos and ruffled his hair and then patted his shoulder, "Don't worry too much, bambino. Things will work out." He then walked out of the kitchen leaving Carlos to his thoughts.

Carlos wasn't quite sure how to react to the sudden fatherly affection. The last time Roberto had done something like that was when their mother was still with them. He couldn't shake the thought that all these changes were the result of Ty coming to their lives, and his selfish side didn't want things to go back to the way they were in the time before Ty.

Carlos shook his head, putting his thoughts aside, and went back to the dishes. If he didn't finish them properly, he'd have to do them for another week.

X

Ty didn't remember when she fell asleep, but she was grateful that she had no nightmares. She would have liked to remain asleep for longer, but someone had found her.

"What are you doing, stronza?" Dante questioned.

He had found Ty sleeping peacefully, knees drawn up and hugged loosely to her chest by her arms, head lolled against the outer wall of the mansion. Her lips were slightly parted as she breathed evenly and deeply and Dante refused to admit that he had stared at the sight for a moment too long to be considered a cursory look.

Ty yawned, arms stretching over her head and legs unfurling. Had she not been wearing Jimmy's hoodie, her own tank top would have risen up and Dante found himself hating the hoodie even more than he already did much to his own confusion and irritation.

"What time is it?" Ty asked, rubbing her eyes and squinting at the sunlight. She guessed it had to be sometime in the early afternoon or late morning. Probably the more usual time she woke up.

Dante held his tongue for a moment and answered, "11:30-ish. What are you doing here?"

Ty looked up at him, still having to squint against the sunlight even though she herself was covered in shade, "What did it look like, doofus? I was sleeping." Even though it wasn't my original intent, but I'm not complaining.

Dante pinched the bridge of his nose and breathed out slowly. "If you want to sleep, stay indoors. You'll get sick and become an even bigger pain in the ass, stronza."

"I didn't come out here to sleep," Ty defended herself, not like the tone Dante used which implied that she was stupid.

"Then why?" Dante asked, secretly pleased to have gotten her to inadvertently confess to partially lying to him.

"None of your business," Ty said and got up, dusting off her butt and stretching once more until she felt and heard the satisfying crack of her spine.

"Actually, it is my business, stronza. You're our problem now and if you run off to places without others knowing, Bellini is going to have you in his hands in a matter of seconds," Dante said, feeling his anger rising. How the hell does she not understand the situation? Well she couldn't sleep so that might be something, or she might be one of those people that take a while to get used to a different bed. What the fuck am I thinking? Why do I even care? I don't.

Ty grumbled and finally said, "Fine, I just needed to cool down, alright? And I don't know this place all too well."

Dante didn't know what made him do it, but he ended up saying, "If you need to release stress, you could go down to the shooting range. It's usually empty but even then you can easily block out other people if they happen to be there."

Ty gave Dante a curious look. Is he trying to be nice? "Thanks… I'll keep that in mind."

Dante forced a nonchalant shrug, "I'm only suggesting it so we don't have to go through some useless manhunt because you're stupid enough to get yourself caught by Bellini."

Ty immediately glared at him, "Well sorry for not knowing the rules of being acquainted to the fucking mafia."

With that, she shoved past Dante, who was kicking himself in the head without knowing why, and went back inside. Even though he annoyed her, she was sincerely thankful about the suggestion to go to the shooting range. It helped when she had her breakdown – though she'd rather forget about certain events that had occurred – and she knew that shooting some targets would help her with cooling her volatile temper.

___

Italian Lingo:

Buongiorno, bambina - Good morning, child/little girl

Grazie, bambina - thank you, child/little girl

Dolcezza - sweetness/sweetheart

- yes

Bambino - child/little boy

Stronza - bitch

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