Status: Completed... For Now.



The atmosphere in Blair’s unofficial side of the parking garage for the Compound was nearly overexcited, especially Toretto. He hadn’t left Blair’s side since she had invited him on the trip with her, he had committed himself to planning every detail of the trip - one that Blair and her team had been on many times, and didn’t require the meticulous details Toretto added. But Blair couldn’t fault him on his enthusiasm - the man hadn’t raced in months, she figured he was probably going stir crazy.

Which he was. It was strange, though; the aspect of the trip was not that he was going to get to race, but that Blair was bringing her BMW - which he took as a sign that she was going to race. Toretto had wanted to watch the little redhead compete since she had presented him with his car; she obviously had good taste in vehicles, which definitely meant she could drive… he hoped. The muscle man was to base his entire opinion of Blair’s character around how she raced, simply because he was on the fence about her. Blair was a woman who Toretto couldn’t decide if he loved or hated, and with Blair, there was no in between.

“So we’re going to pack the M5 and the Saleen, we’ll drive the M7 I have. I can hear it calling my name, Toretto, begging me ‘Blair, please drive me. I’m the ultimate driving machine,’” Blair stole Toretto’s Corona from the workbench, near which she was perched on a stool, watching him work. Toretto had installed a second hood strut in addition to the original, with one on either side; he had less of a chance for being squashed under the hood again. If he had to get another nose job, there was fear that he would end up looking less like M. Shadows and more like Michael Jackson. Blair had laughed at him at first, saying that as long as the Buster wasn’t around he had nothing to fear, at which point Toretto practically tore off his shirt to show her the enormous, front-of-a-car-hood-shaped scabby scar forming on his back. Unlike his nose, that she hadn’t had the pleasure of re-bandaging, although she doubted she would have wanted to.

“Why not just drive the ‘Stang?” Toretto grunted, using a socket wrench on some obscure thing beneath the hood that Blair couldn’t quite make out.

“It’s too far; you know how many miles that would put on your baby? She’d stop looking so new and start feeling a little… tired.” Blair chuckled, sipping from the Corona. She had brought him down a case, so she didn’t feel bad at all.

If there was one thing that was bad about being a convicted criminal running from the law it was the location. The compound was nearly an hour and a half outside of Tver, making a trip to St. Petersburg five hours and one to Moscow three and a half. It made for very difficult party planning, that was certain. Helsinki was even farther away - St. Petersburg plus nearly three hours through urban areas. She had been forced to commission another SUV-type vehicle for the transportation of her team, because she couldn’t just let them stew in the transport truck for six hours.

Toretto stopped working to wipe his hands on a nasty-looking rag tucked into his waistband and snatched his Corona back from Blair’s well-manicured hands. He was about to reprimand her before he spotted the 12-pack resting on his workbench. With a sigh, Toretto finished the last of the beer, neglecting to open another in favor of sitting next to the Brit. There wasn’t much more tuning he could do to the Mustang, it was as hones as a surgeon’s blade, and even more delicate; he didn’t want to fuck up his most valuable possession the day he needed it.

“When do we leave?” He asked as he tossed the bottle into the trashcan beside him.

“Oh, I’d say an hour and a half; it depends on how long it takes for the monkeys to load up their cars.” Blair shrugged and glanced over at her own car. She had worked on it herself in the wee hours of the morning, installing the nitrous system that was necessary for street racing but not something she liked to keep in the car for legal driving. Too many bad memories. “And thanks to you I now look like a criminal,” Scowling, Blair inspected the red-tinted spider webbing around her elbow - it matched Toretto’s perfectly, down to the arm it was on. However, since she had less surface area on her elbow, he spider web was smaller. “Oh! I got you a present, but I had to wear them first, just in case.” Blair pulled the mirrored silver aviators off the top of her head and handed them to Toretto, motioning for him to put them on.

“Why?” He shook his head, questioning both the gift and her need to wear them.

“Well, what if they looked really good on me? I’d have to buy another pair!” Blair laughed, her cockney accent shining through her usually refined British. Toretto shook his head at her antics, then put the sunglasses on and inspected his reflection in the mirror-slick surface of the Saleen. He had been having a difficult time getting used to his new nose - who would have known that a blow to the nose and the nose job that followed would be enough to change one’s entire face? Toretto hadn’t expected it, but secretly he was glad for the accident that had caused plastic surgery to become necessary - his face, he realized, had been extremely distinctive before. Even going to St. Petersburg with Blair had been an enormous risk prior to the accident.

“I like ‘em.” Toretto pulled Blair into his muscular arms - one of which was still covered by a black trash-bag to keep his healing tattoos in check - to kiss the top of her forehead; Blair struggled against the gesture.

“Hey! Don‘t make me break your nose again!” She laughed, sliding from beneath his grasp. Blair had work to do, no time for cutesy antics from Toretto. “I have to go pack,” She pressed her fingertip gently against Toretto’s nose as she walked away.

“Ah, fuck clothes,” He turned back to working on his car in the loud silence of the garage.

An hour later, Toretto found himself leaning on the Mustang with a duffel bag over his shoulder, watching as the other drivers loaded their cars into the long semi truck. Blair’s M5 had gone on first; she had taken great pains to ensure that her vehicle was loaded with the utmost care and caution - like it was her child or something. She oversaw the operation from the hood of her BMW M7, which she perched on delicately, her heels hooked into the front grille so as not to scratch it. Mia stood beside her; Blair conversed with her in a distracted way as she made certain that none of her cars were dinged in the process of loading.

She was always this obsessive about her vehicles, Toretto had noticed - Blair had little trust for her convict racing team, even though she was a convict herself. He attributed her possessiveness to the fact that they were all still her hard-earned cars (even if hard earned sometimes included tracking down shipments and grand theft auto - which Toretto couldn’t fault her for either), and most of the people who raced for her were renowned for jacking cars and racing in the past.

Toretto’s car went on last, one of the heavier cars compared to the rest. He was mindful of Blair’s watchful eye as he gently accelerated up the ramp - he couldn’t help but wonder what she would do to him if he managed to run into the car in front of him. He didn’t want to know, really. Shouldering his duffel bag, Toretto approached Mia and Blair, smiling excitedly.

“What went up your ass, Dom?” Mia inquired, curious for the source of his goofy grin.

“I get to race, Mia! Finally!” Toretto threw back his head and laughed deeply.

“You,” Blair began, sliding off the hood of her car, “Are insane. And obsessed.” She laughed as well; Mia sadly shook her head as she said her goodbyes to her friend and brother, wishing them luck.

“I’m sure we don’t need the luck, they do.” Blair motioned to her other racers with her head, a sly smile crossed her pale face as she regarded Toretto, who laughed uproariously at her lack of trust for her racers; inwardly, Toretto wondered how Blair managed to captivate the respect of her drivers without returning the action. He lowered himself into the passenger’s seat of Blair’s BMW as she closed her door. The engine roared to life.

Toretto could never sleep while in the car, even while sitting in the passenger seat he was completely enthralled by the machine he was sitting in. After a few hours of his restless tinkering with the glove box - he had taken it off and re-assembled it twice, along with the center console - Blair offered to let Toretto drive for a little while. A little while turned into the remainder of the trip, Blair controlled the playlist and the conversation while Toretto guided the M7 down the predetermined route.

“Excited much?” Blair asked, watching the speedometer - Toretto had a continuing pattern of accelerating and coasting, catching up with the pack and falling behind. “Just set the fucking cruise control.” She murmured, rubbing her temples.

“Alright, grumpy.” Toretto glanced over at her. “What’s your problem?” He asked, tilting his head to the side as he watched the road, the sunset reflecting off his mirrored aviators.

“I’d like some alcohol and a cigarette. I have neither.” She glanced over at Toretto, who simply sighed as he continued down the road after the slow-moving carrier truck.

They arrived at the hotel they would be staying at three hours later, a Best Western which used to be a Prison (according to Blair). Its shear beauty struck Toretto as he climbed out of the car, leaning over the BMW’s low roof to inspect the tall building.

“I only booked it because it has an enormous parking lot, not because it’s particularly beautiful.” Blair shrugged, flinging a large, printed duffel bag over her shoulder.

“Worried about loosing your bag?” Toretto debated weather or not to take the garishly bright thing from her and carry it for her while he joked. After a moment of debate, he plucked it off her shoulder; it joined his own camouflage-print duffel bag. The thing was extremely heavy, heavier than he would have thought.

“Apparently it’s a well-founded fear.” Blair murmured as she blazed into the lobby of the Hotel, demanding their room keys and paying the price of their rooms up front, she spoke very fluent and crisp Finnish in addition to her English and Russian - Toretto had to admit that he was impressed. The receptionist seemed very startled by her appearance in contrast to the six tattooed men who accompanied her. Turning away from the receptionist, Blair distributed the keys - keeping a copy of each key for herself. Toretto raised an eyebrow as she pocketed the copies and her own keys, and picked up her duffel bag as they proceeded to their rooms.

“Well, what the hell are we supposed to do until we race?” Toretto asked as Blair fiddled with her room key. She glanced up and reached out for her duffel bag.

“Visit the sauna? I don’t know, I’m sure you can occupy yourself.” She bustled inside her room and closed the door. Toretto was left standing in his doorway, wondering what the hell had just happened to him. He threw his duffel on the bed, and inspected the fliers that sat on the desk. Moments later, he picked up the phone receiver and dialed.

“I’d like room 305, please.” He waited for a moment. “Blair?”

“What, Dominic? Not have enough to do?”

“Well, yes. Wanna go to dinner with me?” His fingers drummed against the dark wood of the desk in his beautiful hotel room.

“Where?” Blair waited fro an answer, wondering if she brought enough clothing for an extra outing.

“La Petite Mansion. I’ll pay.”

“Oh, that’s so nice of you, with who’s money shall you be paying?” Blair teased, pulling together an outfit of her bag as she spoke.

“Well, it’s not like I haven’t been saving on my own.”


“No. But I’ve got it covered, ok?”

“How long?”

“Until… we go?” Toretto tipped his head. “Thirty minutes.”

“Done.” Blair hung up. Toretto immediately dialed down to the lobby for a suit.

Thirty minutes later, he stood in the lobby, pacing back and forth between attempting to communicate with the Receptionist. Locating a suit rental had been the most difficult part of the evening - getting reservations at a five-star French restaurant had been surprisingly easy. What was most difficult, though, was understanding how Blair had managed to fit an entire garnet red, floor-length dress in her little duffel bag. She swooped down the stairs like an eagle on a mouse, shoulders back, face bright and smiling. Toretto couldn’t help but begin to smile at her and her gleaming pearls.

“How in hell did you accomplish that one?” Toretto asked, offering his arm to her. He led her to the waiting M7.

“I would ask the same about the suit.” Blair commented, smiling as Toretto opened the door for her. “Get me some Duck. Let’s go.”
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Title: The 69 Eyes.