For Kiss of Cinammon ; LL Challenge

Leverage: Eliot and Parker
Warnings: None

Parker sighed as she made her way down the path to a small grave beneath a tree. She hated coming here. Hated it with a passion, but she did it because he was family. Her family. She crouched low, leaning forward to pick the weeds that dared to grow around the shallow grave. Tossing the wilted flowers she left last time, she placed the new ones down and stepped back to survey the word engraved on the headstone.


Parker had come home after a week long con to find her warehouse wide open and her things tossed. Of course, she hadn't had anything of real value in that warehouse. Only one thing... and she'd found him ripped to shreds and his stuffing littered about the floor like confetti. Parker would have gladly given everything she'd ever stolen if it meant Bunny would be back in one piece, but it just wasn't meant to happen. After trying to piece him back together, she'd made the decision and a time of death was called. She buried him on the outskirts of the city on a piece of land that Eliot owned and placed a headstone to mark the spot. She'd carved his name herself. He would have liked that.

Parker wanted to tell the team, but Nate was still dealing with his fathers death and Sophie was busy making sure Nate didn't go over the edge. She tried telling Hardison once, but she couldn't pry his attention away from some stupid game he was playing with those pretend friends of his. And Eliot... Well, he had more important things to worry about than a stuffed animal, even if that stuffed animal was Bunny.

She'd held back the tears and tried to go on with her days. Pretend as though there wasn't a big hole in her heart from the death of her favorite furry friend and hide her pain from the rest of the team. She'd managed to do it for the first few days, but each day got harder and harder until finally, she didn't bother trying to hide it anymore. Yes, Nate had lost his father and that was tragic, but she'd lost someone too. Bunny might not have been a living person like Nate's dad, but he was the only family Parker had ever known all these years. Losing him had been like losing a part of herself and she didn't know how to get it back.

"Why didn't you say anything?"

Parker didn't have to look to know the voice belonged to Eliot.

"Didn't think anyone would understand." She whispered with a small shrug. "It's silly.... crying over a stuffed animal, burying it, but Bunny was....he was..."


Parker looked over at Eliot through a blurry film of tears. She had expected to see annoyance, maybe even confusion or indifference, but all she saw was understanding and compassion. He barely had his arms open before she collapsed against him and soaked his shirt with her tears until she had no more tears to cry.

They never spoke about it after that, but two nights later, Parker found a box on her bed. There was an old faded teddy bear dressed in slightly ripped camo pants and with one eye missing. Parker lifted the bear from the box and noticed it had been sitting on a picture. It was a picture of a small boy, about four years old, holding the bear and wearing matching camo pajamas. Parker turned the picture over and couldn't help but smile as she read the words on the back.

"He ain't much, but he's family - Eliot"

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January 2013

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